Press Release

XCOR CEO Jeff Greason to Testify Before Presidential Commission on Moon, Mars and Beyond

By SpaceRef Editor
March 24, 2004
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Jeff Greason, President and CEO of XCOR
Aerospace will testify today at a public hearing before the President’s
Commission on Implementation of U.S. Space Exploration Policy (Moon, Mars and Beyond)
in Atlanta at the Georgia Institute of Technology. The Commission, also known
as the Aldridge Commission, is comprised of business, aerospace and planetary
science leaders. The Commission is charged with building consensus,
providing recommendations to the President regarding moon research activities,
increasing young people’s interest in space science, and bringing together industry
and other countries as space partners.

Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY), Chairman of the House Science Committee, said on
March 4th: “This is about a lot more than ‘joy rides’ in space, although there’s
nothing wrong with such an enterprise. This is about the future of the U.S.
aerospace industry. As in most areas of American enterprise, the greatest
innovations in aerospace are most likely to come from small entrepreneurs.
This is true whether we’re talking about launching humans or cargo.” Mr.
Greason’s testimony will echo the Chairman’s statements.

Mr. Greason will testify about the role entrepreneurial space companies can
play in advancing President Bush’s space exploration initiative by developing
affordable and sustainable access to space. Testimony highlights include:

“I am here today because I have seen signs of hope. There is an awareness
that we cannot succeed by re-creating Apollo. When President Kennedy set
America on a course for the Moon, America had launched one human being on a
fifteen-minute suborbital flight. It is very likely that before this year is out,
one or more private companies will launch human beings on suborbital flights
with private funding, as part of the X-Prize Foundation effort.”

“Like many emerging companies in the field XCOR currently does work for the
Department of Defense, but not NASA. NASA can play a pivotal role in
encouraging private, low-cost access to space. NASA can position itself to grow with
the private sector very simply, by buying space transportation services
available in the commercial market. That is a simple role with profound
implications. I believe that NASA should use commercial providers as its sole means
of transportation to Earth orbit.”

“If the exploration initiative falters, there will be no business to compete
for. If NASA continues business as usual, that is where we are headed.
America can afford to dare and do great things, but we have to do it as
exploration has been done throughout history; by working with what we have, by living
off the land where possible, and by building expensive custom equipment only
when nothing else can do the job. That is the true spirit of exploration and
an endeavor XCOR would be proud to be part of.”

SpaceRef staff editor.