JPL Job Cuts Are A Boon For Private Space Hiring

Conestoga rocket

A Space Services Inc. of America Conestoga rocket lifted off in 1982, becoming the first privately funded rocket to reach space.

Credit: Bettmann/Getty Images
Whjen David Hannah, Jr., a Houston-based entrepreneur, aimed to introduce commercial space launch services to the marketplace with his privately developed Conestoga rocket, he lured former Mercury 7 astronaut Donald “Deke” Slayton to lead the charge. The rocket lifted off on Sept. 9, 1982, from...

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