Gene Expression

Hawaii, going long on space tourism

Hawaii Looks to Space Tourism to Aid Recession Woes:

According to the Honolulu Advertiser, the state would start by spending up to a million dollars developing a spaceport.

But Hawaii isn’t alone: The state is already facing heady competition from states including Florida, Okalahoma and New Mexico, all of which are moving into the space tourism market.

Hawaii has one comparative advantage: it’s further south. I recall that the increased velocity of the earth’s rotation the closer you get to the equator means that you get some energy for lift-off for free. This is why the French launch their rockets from French Guiana, and the Soviets had a facility in Kazakhstan.


  1. #1 Daggerstab
    July 15, 2009

    Oh, my… The housing bubble’s burst, let’s start a spaceport bubble…

    Fun fact: ESA is building a Soyuz launching pad, so the Russians will be able to launch their rockets from French Guiana, too. 🙂

  2. #2 Alan Kellogg
    July 15, 2009

    Kazakhstan is north of Florida. Heck, Kazakhstan is north of New York. A small, but important, detail. 🙂

  3. #3 razib
    July 15, 2009

    another important detail: you can’t go that far south in the former USSR.

  4. #4 Peter Lund
    July 21, 2009

    1) ESA is not the French. ESA includes Canada 🙂
    2) Russia still has the facility in Kazakhstan.
    3) The “French” actually launch the rockets from within the European Union 😉

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