Lawyers, insurance & $$$ -- oh my!

For space transportation companies, building the rockets can be the easy part. In The Space Review this week, Jeff Foust reports on a panel at Space Access '07 that covered these other well-known challenges for NewSpace business (and please excuse the "i words"): ITAR, insurance and obtaining investment dollars.

The panel included and space lawyers Jim Dunstan and Doug Griffith along with ITAR expert Kerry Scarlott, XCOR's Randall Clague, TGV Rockets' Pat Bahn.

Alas, pessimism about ITAR reform remains a staple of these panels. On the space flight insurance side, as Pat Bahn says, "Amateurs talk propellant, professionals talk insurance.” With regard to liability issues, state legislation is, as Jim Dunstan says "the next great frontier for us space lawyers.” Agreed.

By the way, Rand Simberg blogs Jim Dunstan's talk on risk, liability and space law

As for attracting investors, things may be slowly looking up for NewSpace. Esther Dyson said, “There’s more excitement among investors.... In other words, they’re more ready to be stupid.”

(And Esther can says that -- she's one of the investors.)

(By the way, Rand, who also spoke at the conference in Phoenix, has an uplifting
story about the changing investment climate.)
* * *
UPDATE: See all of Clark Lindsey's hot updates from the conference on
RLV Space Transport News (HobbySpace, of course.)

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