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Randa & Rod Milliron, Interorbital Systems, Monday, 6-15-15 June 16, 2015

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Randa & Rod Milliron, Interorbital Systems, Monday, 6-15-15

http://archived.thespaceshow.com/shows/2494-BWB-2015-06-15.mp3

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Guests:  Randa & Rod Milliron.  Topics:  Interorbital Systems news & updates re their modular rocket & more.  Please direct all comments and questions regarding Space Show programs/guest(s) to the Space Show blog, https://thespaceshow.wordpress.com.  Comments and questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright and are not permitted without prior written consent, even if for your own use. We do not permit the commercial use of Space Show programs or any part thereof, nor do we permit editing, YouTube clips, or clips placed on other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted, but the quote must be cited or referenced using the proper citation format. Contact The Space Show for further information. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See www.onegiantleapfoundation.org/amazon.htm.  For those listening to archives using live365.com and rating the programs, please email me as to why you assign a specific rating to the show. This will help me bring better programming to the audience.

 

We welcomed back Randa and Rod Milliron of Interorbital Systems (www.interorbital.com) for news and updates since their 2014 Space Show appearance. During the first segment of our 1 hour 28 minute program, Randa and Rod updated us on their launch license application process as they just returned from starting the process with the FAA AST office.  They also attended a ride share conference at the Applied Physics Lab which they talked about.  We talked about launch sites, the EIR needed for their launch license, and other issues relevant to getting a launch license.  Our guests mentioned they were planning both land and sea launches.  We talked more about the ocean launches in the second segment of the program.  Our guests described their test launch program, then we talked about their satellite kits, both the TubeSat kit and the CubeSat kit.  We then received a call from one of the Interorbital customers, Barbara at Boreal Space (www.borealspace.com).  Following Barbara’s call and her take on being an Interorbital customer, Randa talked about their Guidance System test program and upcoming test flight, then Jack sent in an email asking them for time lines on their launch manifest.  You can see the Interorbital launch manifest at http://interorbital.com/interorbital_05022015_014.htm.  We talked about the capabilities of their satellite kits once the TubeSat or CubeSat made it to orbit as Kristine asked what these small satellite can do.  Next, the Interorbital orbital plans were discussed as were the company suborbital plans.  Jake in Dallas inquired about their suborbital to orbital plans using their modular rocket system.  Don’t miss what our guests had to say about this.  Randa then brought up their space rescue and suit design program featuring Olaf Spitzer jumping from space off of one of the Interorbital rockets.  Our guests had much to say about this planned jump, especially when they compared it to the recent record holding balloon jumps. Near the end of the first segment, questions came in about 3D printing and rocket reusability.

 

In the second segment, Tim called to ask about the cost to make each modular rocket, wanting to know if they could make a profit given these costs.  Our guests said actual costs were proprietary but they did say they would price their orbital launch at $1 million for 30-50 kilos to a 310 km orbit.  Tim also wanted to know how Randa and Rod got started in this business, plus he wanted to know if crowd funding was a good way to go.  They supported crowd funding but said it might not be a good method for starting up a launch business.  Don’t miss their comments on this subject.  Mac inquired about going to a geo orbit with their N36 rocket and a small payload.  Bill asked how many employees they had. The number was 12.  Next, we got a listener question asking about their lunar plans.  Our guests went into some detail regarding their lunar plans and missions.  I asked our guests about the very small cubesat, the PocketCube.  I also asked about the skill level needed for assembling their Personal Satellite Kits and found out they also sell backup kits/parts in case you ruin something making the kit.  Near the end of the show I asked them for then remaining 2015 plans so don’t miss their expected highlights for the balance of the year.  Wayne got in a last minute question asking about their ocean launch plans.  Here, we learned that they had changed from earlier floating launch ideas.  Listen to how they intend on launch from the ocean with their new concept.  Interorbital does not produce a newsletter so watch their website for updated information.

 

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog above.  You can reach Randa and Rod through their website or me.

Comments»

1. J Fincannon - June 25, 2015

One question that occurred to me was whether then planned on recovering any of the spent boosters or were they just going to sink or float or what. It sounds like there are going to be alot of these released and I do not know what the government licensing requires. Do the big boys (or girls) have to recover their stages (clean up after themselves)? Somehow, I don’t think so.

2. Jim Davis - June 18, 2015

I wish the Millirons nothing but the best but I thought they came off as way too defensive towards the end of the show. Their suggestion that competitors engaged in a whispering campaign against them was particularly off putting.

It is just not reasonable to make the same claims and announce the same plans every year for the past 15 years and not expect to be subjected to a large amount of skepticism and not a little ridicule.

I get that nothing happens without money. But why should anyone believe that this is *the* year that they will have the money to do what they plan? They didn’t have the money a year ago, or five years ago, or ten years ago. What is going to change this year?

I expect that next year they’ll be back on the Space Show talking about the same grandiose plans for the future while explaining that not much happened in the previous year because nothing happens without money.

I will be very pleasantly surprised if I am mistaken.

J Fincannon - June 25, 2015

I did not see them as being “way too defensive”, they made some sense, its a hard competitive world out there. They seem like true entrepreneurs. They built sounding rockets and sell cubesat kits and are working their way, albeit too slowly for some, to orbit. I like their dreams (the so-called “grandiose plans” you refer to) and vision and if they have created a company with a workforce, then I am impressed. Once you can pay employees (or even have ANY employees since its hard to go from yourself alone to putting out paychecks), then you have crossed an important threshold.

I had not heard of them before. But hearing their approach, it makes alot of sense. Mass production of hardware is going to have economies of scale not possible for much larger vehicles. If they can eventually make it work, then I think that would be terrific!


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