OKLAHOMA SPACE ALLIANCE

A Chapter of the National Space Society

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Minutes of March Meeting

            Oklahoma Space Alliance met March 10, 2012 at the I-Hop on North Classen Boulevard in Oklahoma City. Those attending included Steve, Karen and Brian Swift, Chris Carson, David Sheely, Tom Koszoru, Russ Davoren, John Northcutt, Jeffrey Stephenson, Caitlin Thibodeau Dennis Wigley, Tim Scott and Syd Henderson. I apologize for names misspelled or excluded; this was our largest meeting in many years with a lot of new faces.
            Steve’s phone in the officer’s listings is his cell phone, not a landline.
            Added to New Business: Brochure, Celebration of Human Space Flight, and Chris’s introduction as Region 3 director.
            Steve Swift talked about our letterhead, which uses a variant of the logo created by Leigh Perry. The proposed letterhead is a variant of the red part of the NSS logo, with the circular logo created by Leigh at the point of the red part. When used as a watermark, the logo is an enlarged version of the circular logo.
            We have $267 in cash in $263.12 in checking account. Syd didn’t ask for reimbursement this month.
            Our Celebration of Human Spaceflight will be the evening of Thursday, April 12 at the Moore Public Library. Steve Goodgate is our contact with the KISS Institute of Practical Robotics. Tom and Syd are working on this. April 12 is the 51st anniversary of Yuri Gagarin’s space flight, the first human space flight, and the 31st anniversary of the first Space Shuttle launch.
            Bill Khourie has asked us to table writing letters on behalf of the Oklahoma Spaceport since it’s a bad time to ask Congress for money.
            The Annual Report has been sent to NSS Headquarters.
            Tom has an ISDC membership that he has to give up since he’s going to Germany in May.

Topics discussed in What’s New in Space:
            Cassini photograph of Saturn, Titan and Rhea.
            Space debris in the spotlight: using lasers to track debris. [This article is in numerous places on the web that will all pop up with a Google search.]
            NASA kills Mars deal with Europe. [Two deals actually, ExoMars and a proposed 2018 European mission to Mars.]
            Photographs from space, including the aurora and lightning strikes.
            The Air Force X37B robotic plane.
            NASA shuts down its last mainframe computers.
            Asteroid AG5 has a diameter of 140 meters (460 feet) and an estimate 1 in 500 chance of impacting the Earth in 2040. It also comes within a million miles of Earth in 2023.
            The Dragon and Falcon 9 assembly is now complete. It can carry 6000 kg or seven passengers.
            The Shenzhou 3 launch is in June.
            Virgin Galactic is looking for its first rocket-powered test this year.
            Lockheed will use Alaska’s Kodiak Launch Complex to support further Athena launches. Athena was added to NASA’s launch services contract in 2010.
            Reduction of salt can slow osteoporosis in space. For details, see http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/research/benefits/salt.html.
            Our next meeting will be 2:30 on April 14, location to be decided. Note, though, that the Celebration of Human Space Flight is on April 12.
            Topics for the Agenda on April 14 include Moon Day, the brochure and a report on the Orbital Services Corporation.

Report on March 14 OSIDA Meeting

            The Oklahoma Space Industry Development Authority met at the Oklahoma Department of Transportation building on March 14. Board members present were Jack Bonny, Gilmer Capps, Darryl Murphy, Joe King and Lou Sims. There were three in the audience, including Syd Henderson and Steve Swift for Oklahoma Space Alliance.
            The Cecil Spaceport Development Summit at Florida State College at Jacksonville is on March 26. Oklahoma Spaceport Executive Director Bill Khourie is attending on behalf of OSIDA. Bill will serve on a panel about point-to-point space travel using suborbital horizontal-launch vehicles. Mohave, New Mexico, and Kennedy spaceports are suitable for horizontal launch, as is the Oklahoma Spaceport, which is still the only spaceport not controlled by the military. Cecil Spaceport is a former Navy airport and still has military connections.
            OSIDA Chairman Jack Bonny mentioned that people from the Chinese space program once came to Burns Flat to look at the Spaceport because they wanted a central shipping location for product distribution.
            Contracts have been signed on Operational Control Center. Runway and taxi signage and identifying lights are completed. FAA money covered all with $42,000 left over for fixing wiring, but OSIDA still has to pay some.
            Bill Khourie attended the FAA AST conference on behalf of OSIDA. Commercial spaceport promotion is still near the top of the list. The spaceplane concept is still alive at the Department of Defense and is a perfect fit with the Oklahoma Spaceport. XCor is also a perfect fit.
            OSIDA needs a propane auxiliary generator for the lift station. ODISA needs to pay $13,240 up front, but will be reimbursed for $9930 by FEMA.

Between-Meeting Activities

            Tom Koszoru, Claire McMurray, Steve Swift and Syd Henderson met at Claire’s house on March 15 (I think) to work on the Celebration of Human Spaceflight and brochure. The Celebration (aka Yuri’s Night) will be in the Story Time Room at the Moore Public Library on April 12 beginning at 5:00 p.m. We can have food and drink but no cooking utensils. We can’t sell anything. It does have Wifi and a large screen. There is a television in the room with a DVD player. We should do a section on “What’s Happening in Space?” We should have videos, food, and a large container of Kool-aid or ice tea. Syd will get chips. A website for looking for materials is http://shop.yurisnight.net.
            On the brochure, we should list past accomplishments and goals. We plan to have an essay contest. There’s no need to have a detailed topic yet. The Sooner Mall would like to host another art contest. We can sponsor road trips. We have to have something about NSS and their mission statement. For pictures we can use NASA photographs and the space calendar. Possibly also SpaceX launch facilities? We can do a sheet of “What’s happening in space,” since that’s the OSA theme for this year.
            The Oklahoma City Astronomy Club has an article once a week or so in the Daily Oklahoman. 


         --Minutes and notes by OSA Secretary Syd Henderson

Contact person for Oklahoma Space Alliance is Claire McMurray.
PO Box 1003
Norman, OK 73070
Webmaster is Syd Henderson.

Copyright 2012 Oklahoma Space Alliance.