The Tauri Group, an Alexandria, VA -based consulting firm, forecasts a robust business for suborbital reusable launch vehicles (SRVs) in a report prepared for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Space Florida. Tauri Group President Carissa Christensen testified to Congress about the report yesterday.
The 102-page report assesses the demand for SRVs in eight markets: commercial human spaceflight, basic and applied research, technology demonstration, media and public relations, education, satellite deployment, remote sensing, and point-to-point transportation. It presents three different scenarios: a baseline scenario, a growth scenario, and a constrained scenario. It also differentiates between two user communities: "individual" and "enterprise" (government, business, non-profit).
The report is full of caveats about the assumptions used in the six-month study and even has a section entitled "major uncertainties" that lays out the sensitivities that readers should bear in mind. Nonetheless, it provides hard numbers forecasting the "seat/cargo equivalents" one might anticipate and revenue for companies involved in the business that are likely to be remembered long after the caveats are forgotten.