STC website news
August 31, 2004
RUBICON PROJECT IS ENVIRONMENTALLY SOUND
Regarding recent publicity to the effect that the Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary is squaring off against Space Transport Corporation (STC), STC would like to provide some clarification and additional information. STC respects and admires the National Marine Sanctuary for defending the Sanctuary against a perceived hazard. However, we expect to show that the natural aversion to “rocketry” is unfounded. We appreciate natural beauty as much as anyone, and have chosen rocket technologies that have minimal impact on nature.
The propellant that powers the Rubicon is a solid rubber-like propellant similar to the Space Shuttle’s solid propellant. All solid propellant is consumed during a normal Rubicon flight and, even in a catastrophic failure, STC expects all fuel to be combusted as occurred in the Rubicon 1 event. For minor trajectory adjustment thrusters, Rubicon uses compressed air rather than potentially hazardous liquid propellants.
Due to the nature of Rubicon, no launch scenario (perfect flight or utter wipeout) could violate Sanctuary regulations by injuring a Sanctuary resource or quality. The Rubicon 1 flight was not a violation and future flights will likewise be compliant.
STC is working on Rubicon program for two reasons: First, to develop a prototype human space transport vehicle that can win the X Prize and later be commercialized; and second, to mature the basic launch vehicle technologies. STC will apply the technologies developed for Rubicon in a variety of causes including national defense and scientific missions. STC has made contacts with the U.S. Dept. of Defense and various universities in preparation for future contracts. While being sensitive to Mother Nature, STC is pioneering cost-effective access to space, vital for national security and worldwide technological advancement.
Although basic discussions did take place with Sanctuary staff prior to the Rubicon 1 launch, STC apologizes for not communicating more fully. STC invites a Sanctuary observer to attend the Rubicon 2 event. STC will continue open discussion with the Sanctuary to totally resolve this issue. We believe that their concerns will be put to rest and that they will be fully supportive of our effort once all of the facts are on the table.
STC has made every effort to comply with all city, county, state, federal and military rules and regulations. Our goal at STC is to be a good neighbor to everyone on the peninsula and be the most successful space trucking company in the business. We encourage comments by email or phone
STC has written a letter to the Editor of the Peninsula Daily News conveying the information above.