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Wednesday, May 26, 2004
Armadillo Aerospace: 'Rocket Man' Preparing Space Blast
Challenges come in all sizes. For one North Texas man and the team he leads, the challenge is as big as space.
John Carmack, an entrepreneur who built his reputation and fortune in the computer industry, heads a group of seven volunteers who share the dream of space flight. The team, called Armadillo Aerospace, work two days a week in a North Texas warehouse to complete construction of a rocket ship they call Black Armadillo.
They hope to be the first private organization to launch a spacecraft twice within two weeks. Carmack believes Armadillo Aerospace is getting close.
"We will definitely be flying vehicles this year, flying them fast and doing some significant test flights," Carmack said.
It's not exactly NASA, but Carmack said he and the team are making strides. "We pick up the skills we need as we go," he said. "Rocket science is basically plumbing with the volume turned up a whole lot."
Armadillo Aerospace hopes to win a national prize, sponsored by The X-Prize Foundation, of St. Louis, of $10 million.
Team member Russ Blink will pilot Black Armadillo during its first manned test flight. He was chosen for the task because he possesses special attributes. Read More
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