Spaceport America, NM–November 26, 2019 – Spaceport America, the world’s first purpose-built commercial spaceport located in southern New Mexico and UP Aerospace, a space launch and flight test service provider based in Highlands Ranch, Colorado with facilities at Spaceport America, announced the successful launch of UP Aerospace’s Space Loft 14 (SL-14) rocket from the Spaceport America Vertical Launch Area on Friday, November 22. With NASA and multiple university programs present, the launch—which was part of the NASA Flight Opportunities Program—marked UP Aerospace’s thirteenth launch from Spaceport America.
The SL-14 Launch Vehicle reached an altitude of 57 miles. Additionally, as a fundamental step in UP Aerospace’s testing of new systems, this mission included a small second stage rocket motor and attitude control system. Advances made with the successful mission of these payloads will be pivotal as UP Aerospace moves toward the launch of their larger orbital vehicle, SPYDER.
In addition to these systems, SL-14 carried an experimental payload that seeks to improve access to space through the use of Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) technology. Using ADS-B for future space launch missions is expected to improve safety and reduce detrimental effects on commercial aviation. Other payloads on the mission also were designed to advance the state-of-the-art in avionics, flight management, and data recording with particular applications for emerging small launch vehicles.
“Last week’s UP Aerospace launch marked huge strides being made in the aerospace industry,” said Daniel Hicks, Chief Executive Officer Spaceport America. “The Space Loft 14 vehicle contained vital technology for UP Aerospace’s upcoming SPYDER launch, which will mark a significant advancement for small companies within the industry. And the ADS-B technology onboard will help to ensure that space flights have every opportunity to launch. We commend UP Aerospace for their visionary efforts and look forward to seeing huge things continue to come from this company.”
About UP Aerospace
UP Aerospace is a space launch and flight test service provider specializing in advanced engineering, launch technology development, and state-of-the-art rapid and low cost launch operations. Our headquarters are located in Highland ranch, Colorado, with launch facilities at Spaceport America in New Mexico. For more information, visit https://www.upaerospace.com.
About Spaceport America
Spaceport America is the first purpose-built commercial spaceport in the world. The FAA-licensed launch complex, situated on 18,000 acres adjacent to the U.S. Army White Sands Missile Range in southern New Mexico, has a rocket friendly environment of 6,000 square miles of restricted airspace, low population density, a 12,000-foot spaceway, and 340 days of sunshine and low humidity. Some of the most respected companies in the commercial space industry are customers at Spaceport America: Virgin Galactic, Boeing, UP Aerospace, HyperSciences, EXOS Aerospace, and SpinLaunch. Visit https://spaceportamerica.com and http://gatewaytospace.com for more information. Spaceport America is #NewMexicoTRUE.