Last year I had a wonderful time attending the Wirefly X PRIZE Cup in Las Cruces, New Mexico – it’s like an air show for space. The X PRIZE Cup is a by-product of the Ansari X PRIZE – the US$ 10 million prize which Burt Rutan won by being the first by launching the manned Space Ship one into space and back twice in a row. The X PRIZE Foundation wants to encourage faster development of space travel and commercialization. The X PRIZE Cup is a way to conduct contests, demonstrate technology, and help future space entrepreneurs (kids) see what rockets and related technologies are all about. People see rockets launch, scientific experiments by kids of all ages, jets, helicopters, and more. There are lots of photos and videos on last years event at Space.com. And, you can see my own photos from last year and a GPS track. My favorite though is the aerial photo of the 2006 X PRIZE Cup I took from my plane which is available for anyone to see who looks at the Las Cruces airport (notice the image credit in GE).
This year’s Wirefly X PRIZE Cup will be held at the Holloman Air Force Base on October 26 – 28. Holloman is about 60 miles north east of Las Cruces in New Mexico (see in GE here ). They are holding the event in the desert so you can watch higher flying rockets, and faster jets under the crisp blue skies of New Mexico. Read more about the plans at Space.com here and here.
For last year’s event, I helped coordinate the development of Google Earth content that was space-related or directly related to the X PRIZE Cup. Members of the Google Earth Community, and the Google Earth development team helped as well. There is some pretty cool space content for Google Earth here. Read these stories for more details on the content:
- X PRIZE Cup in 3D in Google Earth
- X PRIZE Cup’s Showcase of 3D Space Models for Google Earth
- New Mexico Space Trails
- Space Atlas for Google Earth
- Flight of Space Ship One Depicted in Google Earth
Or visit Google’s showcase for the X PRIZE Cup. You may remember Google recently announced they are sponsoring the new Google Lunar X PRIZE. I like the fact that a big corporation like Google is such a big sponsor for space development.