Gilmour Space, the Australian and Singaporean New Space launch company, has announced the appointment of two space veterans, Pamela Melroy, a former NASA astronaut, and Dava Newman, former Deputy Administrator of NASA, to its advisory board, as it prepares to enter the global small launch market in 2020.
“We are very proud to welcome Professor Newman and Colonel Melroy as senior advisors to the board,” said Gilmour Space’s CEO and Founder, Adam Gilmour. “Dava and Pamela have both had incredible careers in space. Their deep knowledge and experience across civil, defence and commercial space activities — and their openness to new technologies and innovation — will be invaluable to the team as we grow our launch capabilities and develop frontier technologies in space.”
Melroy is a retired colonel in the U.S. Air Force, a test pilot, and ex-NASA astronaut and Space Shuttle commander. She has held senior roles in the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), and in various defence companies in the U.S. and Australia.
“I am very pleased to be joining the Gilmour Space advisory board at this exciting time,” Melroy said. “I believe their hybrid rocket technology is poised to make a substantial contribution to the low-cost launch market,” she added.
Newman is the former deputy administrator of NASA, and current Apollo Program Professor of Aeronautics & Astronautics and Engineering Systems at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). She has been a key proponent of NASA’s human Journey to Mars, and is a renowned inventor, mentor, and engineer.
“Indeed, we are at the crossroads in commercial space with the advent of new small launch vehicles,” Newman said. “Gilmour Space has demonstrated significant advances in their propulsion technology, and I look forward to seeing more innovative engineering from this promising Australian rocket company.”
Gilmour Space is a next-generation hybrid propulsion company developing low-cost launch vehicles for the small satellite market. Since obtaining its Series A funding mid last year, the Queensland-based company has achieved a number of major milestones, including a Space Act Agreement with NASA and a successful 12-second, 75 kN thrust (16,900 lb) test-fire of its orbital rocket engine.