Eric Knight

Eric Knight the CEO of UP Aerospace, Inc., www.upaerospace.com, the world's premier supplier of low-cost space access. Mr. Knight is a veteran business owner, pioneer, entrepreneur, and inventor. In 1985, Mr. Knight created what many now recognize as one of the world's first global e-commerce systems: "The Download America BBS". This revolutionary dial-up computer system grew to nearly 10,000 subscribers from over 70 countries, accepting online credit-card orders over a decade before the practice of e-commerce became widespread. In 1996, Mr. Knight was selected as a top American inventor by both the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and the Intellectual Property Owners Association. Mr. Knight has over 37 inventions and a variety of patents and products in the marketplace. As an inventor, Mr. Knight has been on major television networks worldwide, on major cable networks such as CNN, and on numerous television programs and talk shows, including a guest appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman. Also in 1996, Mr. Knight created one of the world's first online travel agencies: Travelforless.com. Today, Travelforless.com has grown into a major online travel-booking portal, providing discount airfare, hotel, and car rental services to thousands of people every year. In 1998, Mr. Knight created SearchItAll.com, one of the Internet's early mega-search portals. SearchItAll.com remains a popular Web search service for users worldwide. From 1984 to 1997, concurrent with his invention and online initiatives, Mr. Knight held a number of key posts at Connecticut's largest advertising agency, Mintz & Hoke, Inc. During that span, Mr. Knight was a Vice President, an Associate Creative Director, and a Senior Copywriter, and helped launch new products and services for major regional and national clients, including United Technologies, Pratt Whitney, Hamilton Standard, Carrier, Otis Elevator, EMC, Gerber Scientific, Loctite, and Warner-Lambert. In 1998, Mr. Knight combined his online, marketing, and innovation resources to help build one of New England's leading interactive agencies: Outrider. Mr. Knight helped grow Outrider into an international interactive agency with over 250 employees, spanning 18 offices in 13 countries. In 2005, after Hurricane Katrina, Mr. Knight combined his passion for community service, his propensity for innovation, and his experience of 32 years as a ham radio operator to create the National SOS Radio Network -- the world's first free, public-oriented emergency communications network. National SOS takes advantage of the over 100 million low-cost Family Radio Service "walkie talkies" that are already in the public's hands. In less than a year and a half, this new public communications network is gaining visibility as an emergency communications tool for communities across America. www.NationalSOS.com Mr. Knight's passion for aerospace is deeply rooted. It began in the early 60s, closely following and supporting NASA's mission to land on the moon. During that time, and throughout the following decades, Mr. Knight designed, tested, and launched on a hobby basis a variety of solid-fuel rocket vehicles. Over a number of years, Mr. Knight provided monetary and technology contributions to the rocketry program that succeeded in launching the world's first private rocket into space on May 17, 2004.

Broadcast 756 (Special Edition)

SmallSat Conference interviews make up this special recorded Space Show program. While at SmallSat, I interviewed just a few of those attending to get their perspective on either what they were doing at the Conference and why they were there, or their views on small satellites and updates regarding space development. For example, the first interview was conducted at the booth representing the Reagan Test Site at Kwajalein Island (www.smdc.army.mil/RTS.html).

Broadcast 657 (Special Edition)

Eric Knight, CEO of UP Aerospace, Inc., was the guest for this special Space show program. We began the interview talking with Eric about his amateur experiences and his having launched an amateur rocket to space prior to starting UP Aerospace. Eric stated it was very hard to do, outlined some of the many sacrifices that were made to be able to have a successful amateur launch to space. I asked about the total cost for doing this and he could not estimate it given all the volunteer labor and other contributions that went into the project to become part of the total development costs.

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