Orbital Outfitters, a NewSpace company that provides a range of services to vehicle developers and other companies in the aerospace sector, will establish its headquarters, an altitude chamber research center and materials handling facility in Midland, Texas.
“We have assembled a top-level team of experts, craftspeople and manufacturers in the fields of space suit theory, design, manufacture and utilization, including human factors, space medicine and engineering. Supported by a business, legal, policy and marketing group, our team has the breadth and depth to support the growth of a strong new leader in the field of human life support and safety systems for use in space, while also pursuing and creating new markets here on Earth,” the company said.
This week Midland Development Corp. approved a nearly $7 million agreement which will permit Orbital Outfitters to manage and operate a $3.2 million altitude chamber facility, which MDC will own. According to news reports, the board will also provide the firm with an incentive of $2.2 million to construct its headquarters in the Lone Star State city, along with $1.5 million to assist in its relocation from California.
In 2008 Orbital Outfitters, together with the Texas Engineering Experiment Station of the Texas A&M University System, and Dittmar Associates, Inc, was selected as a team to develop new concepts for a “soft shoulder” for NASA’s new Constellation space suit that is to support future missions to the International Space Station and beyond. These missions include the return of humans to the Moon and potentially to Mars.
“This is an excellent opportunity for NASA and OO as this area of technology is precisely where OO has been devoting its primary efforts for the last two years,” said Jeff Feige, CEO, when Orbital Outfitters was selected. “Our goal is to provide our clients in the newly emerging sub-orbital commercial space travel industry with comfortable yet safe suits for their crews and customers. There are common needs between this industry and NASA and this collaboration provides a strong linkage between the two.”