Juneau, Alaska – Governor Sean Parnell today announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell establishing a formal operating relationship between the Alaska Aerospace Corporation (AAC) and the Virginia Commercial Spaceflight Authority (VCSFA).
“Alaska has been at the forefront of space launch for nearly 20 years,” Governor Parnell said. “With this agreement, we will be creating opportunities for the commercial space industry to secure cost-effective and reliable launch operations from both the east and west coasts. Both Alaska and Virginia will benefit with greater investment and job opportunities as leaders in the burgeoning commercial space industry.”
The MOU defines the intent of the State of Alaska and the Commonwealth of Virginia to initiate a collaborative and cooperative partnership for spaceport operations. Future launch customers will realize business advantages as the partnership will promote efficiency between the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) and the Kodiak Launch Complex (KLC) designed to create commonality between the two spaceports that decreases costs and improves performance.
“The Commonwealth’s partnership with Alaska will further this new era of commercial aerospace activity throughout the Commonwealth,” Governor McDonnell said. “As the U.S. space program increases its reliance on the commercial sector, these types of partnerships will not only help keep America competitive in the space industry, but will help create much-needed jobs and economic development.”
AAC was established by the State of Alaska to develop a high technology aerospace industry in the state. Its core business area is space launch, and it developed, owns, and operates KLC, a state-of-the-industry spaceport on Kodiak Island, Alaska.
The Virginia General Assembly created VCSFA to promote development of the aerospace industry, economic development, and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education throughout the Commonwealth. VCSFA owns and operates MARS, located on Wallops Island, Virginia.
A copy of the MOU is available at: http://gov.alaska.gov/parnell_media/resources_files/mou_082913.pdf