Broadcast 3048 Robert (Bob) Zimmerman

  • The Space Foundation Conference

  • The Space Foundation Conference

  • The Space Foundation Conference

  • The Space Foundation Conference

The Space Foundation Conference

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Guest:  Robert (Bob) Zimmerman;  Topics:  Launch industry review and predictions, small launchers, Falcon Heavy, AI, NASA Administrator, space settlement & more.  Please direct all comments and questions regarding specific Space Show programs & guest(s) to the Space Show blog which is part of archived program on our website,   Comments and questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright and are not permitted without prior written consent, even if for your own use. We do not permit the commercial use of Space Show programs or any part thereof, nor do we permit editing, YouTube clips, or clips placed on other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted, but the quote must be cited or referenced using the proper citation format. Contact The Space Show for further information. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See

We welcomed back Bob Zimmerman for his first program of the new year to discuss his 2017 and 2018 launch industry analysis with predictions.  We talked about space policy and many other issues as well, many of which were listener generated through phone calls and emails.  During the first segment of our 1 hour 37 minute program, Bob spent most of the time talking about both private and government company launches in 2017 with predictions for 2018.  Check out his article on this plus the very important graph he made which is on his website at  We referred to his graph in this article many times during our program, especially in the first segment.

Marshall called to discuss the JWST and pending launch, the SLS/Orion program and more. Next, I read an email from Tim asking Bob to identify the economic drivers for space settlement.  Gary from Kansas City was the last caller of the segment. He wanted to know about Bob's use of launch statistics and also the dedicated small launchers coming on line for cubesats and nanosats. He inquired about piggyback launches (ride share) and more.

In the second segment, Bob addressed the problems showing up with the Google Lunar XPrize.  He talked about teams pulling out for lack of funding, the Rocket Lab delays with the Electron rocket which Moon Express was to use for their entry in the contest.  Team Indus of India pulled out for lack of funding.  The impact of this on Japan was so far unknown as they were teaming up with Team Indus on a PSLV launch and lander for the contest.  He mentioned the Israeli team was also short of funding. 

Bob then put in a plug for his book, "Pioneer."  Check it out here:   Wayne sent in an email asking Bob how both Bob and I ended up doing programs with John Batchelor.  Bob briefly told the story on air.  Listener Sara asked Bob if he thought that regulatory changes from the government my interfere with the pace of commercial space development.  Bob wasted no time in saying yes and then he provide details which included comments about the Outer Space Treaty which he says does not deal with modern problems, especially around property rights.  Don't miss all of what he had to say on this subject.  He also went after the Deep Space Gateway project, calling it a jobs program. 

Bob updated us on the SpaceX spaceport in Texas and talked about hotel chains wanting to build hotels nearby for the expected tourism to the area.  John Hunt called from Ft. Worth.  His first set of comments was about the recently released government UFO report with the Navy F18 pilots and the video of the UFO.  Bob and John talked about it for a few minutes but then Bob wanted to move on as they was no point in continuing to talk about UFOs for obvious reasons.  John was stubborn and did not want to move off the topic but he did inquire about the nature of the opposition in the senate to Jim Bridenstine as the administrator.  Bob had a few things to say about this so don't miss his comments. 

Jerry asked about and his fear and negative statements regarding AI.  Bob had much to say about this but said humans have to be in place and act with a moral conscious to avoid problems.  Bob offered up a comprehensive reply which included his objections to social media.  Don't miss what he had to say on this issue.  We then moved to his closing comments which you will want to hear.

Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog.  You can reach Bob through me or his website,  




2017-2018 Launch Industry review and future assessment

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09 Jan 2018 Robert Zimmerman
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  • The Space Foundation Conference

  • The Space Foundation Conference

  • The Space Foundation Conference

  • The Space Foundation Conference