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Page history last edited by Ken Davidian 4 weeks, 1 day ago

Welcome to the Commercial Space Wiki!

since June 5, 2008!

(twitter id: cswiki) 


Quick Link #2   ***** Commercial Space Market Model Papers ***** 




Please take my 2-minute survey entitled Guesstimates” of Space Flight Participant Industry Segment Emergence Timeframes."

Here are the most recent results:


  • This chart shows the fraction of respondents that thought the level of industry segment emergence for the subject of each question would be achieved for each of the given time frames.
  • These curves closely resemble the future portion of the market adoption (logistic) curve for each space flight participant industry segment mentioned in the survey.
  • This curve is the integral of the survey results approximating the technology adoption life cycle curve (commonly depicted as a Gaussian distribution), ranging from innovators, to early adopters, early majority, late majority, and laggard customer types.
  • These curves show the fraction of total market saturation achieved (the vertical axis) for each of the time periods shown along the horizontal axis. 


Number of survey responses
(n) = 365

as of 15 September 2021


There is a lot of uncertainty in these results. Here are the most obvious reasons why this data should only be used to assert general statements:
  • POPULATION DEMOGRAPHICS: The population of respondents was not controlled to remove potential biases. Most of the initial respondents were from the "space community," whereas the pool of survey candidates was broadened as time passed. Control of respondent demographic data was not collected, so this is not a variable being controlled.
  • WISDOM OF CROWDS: The validity of these results assume that the average result of many responses is an accurate estimate of reality. This is not necessarily a good assumption (according to the Wikipedia page).
  • S-CURVE ASSUMPTION: There are assumptions built into the technology adoption life cycle and the S-curve of market growth based on the mass appeal and class of innovation theories a given industry segment best fits within. It is not clear that all the subject industry segments of this survey adhere to those assumptions. Here's a quote from (Humphreys, 2010):


"The largest area of diffusion research in marketing comes from the Bass (1969) model, in which the common generalization is that innovations diffuse in an S-curve pattern (Mahajan, Muller, and Bass 1995). That is, the innovation is adopted  slowly at first and then at an accelerated rate until diffusion reaches an inflection point at which adoption of the innovation slows and finally levels off."


    • The sources cited here are:
      • Humphreys, A. (2010). Megamarketing: The Creation of Markets as a Social Process. Journal of Marketing, 74(March), 1–19.
      • Bass, F. M. (1969). A new product growth for model consumer durables. Management science, 15(5), 215-227.
      • Mahajan, V., Muller, E., & Bass, F. M. (1995). Diffusion of new products: Empirical generalizations and managerial uses. Marketing science, 14(3_supplement), G79-G88.> 


Even with the many sources of uncertainty shrouding these results, some general assertions can safely be made:

  • A lot of respondents (60%-70%) think the first industry segments to emerge will deliver suborbital tourism services to 100s of SFPs per year, and orbital transportation services for 10s of SFPs per year. Approximately 90% of respondents think these two industry segments will emerge to the levels of activity defined within 20-50 years.
  • Many respondents (about 25%) think the next set of industry segments to emerge are suborbital transportation for 1000s of SFPs per year, orbital transportation for 100s of SFPs per year, and the very beginnings of off-Earth working for 10s of SFP per year. Most (approx. 90%) respondents think these three industry segments will reach the defined levels of activity within 50-100 years.
  • Very few respondents (5%-10%) think the industry segments of off-Earth working and off-Earth living, both for 100s of SFPs per year, will occur within the next two decades. For these industry segments, most (approx. 90%) respondents think emergence will occur in the range of 100-200 years.



Note: The smoothing factor indicates the number of years over which the data is averaged, or "smoothed," making it more legible and easier to analyze.

Smoothing = 20


Smoothing = 10

Smoothing = 5


Smoothing = 1










Click on the image to download the 9MB file. 

Click here for 31MB file.

Click on the image to download the 4MB file.

No hi-res version available for some reason.

Click on the image to download the 4MB file. 
Click here for the 28MB file.

Click on the image to download the 5MB file. 
Click here to download the 25MB file.

Click on the image to download the 8MB file.

No hi-res version available for some reason.


Click on image to download the 8MB file.
Click here to download the 39MB file


PLEASE NOTE: The date on the 2016 Compendium may seem to be a "skip" in years. FAA AST did this intentionally, based on the following reasoning. The Compendium is published each January, showing that current year on the cover. It implies coverage of previous year's activities, but the Compendium has more than historical data in it. It is a summary of vehicles, activities, ideas, thinking and projections regarding the commercial space industry.

 Thank you for coming to the Commercial Space Wiki, formerly sponsored by Masten Space Systems (and Michael Mealling, in particular). (See Mike in action and learn more about MSS by viewing this Startup Riot 2008 presentation he gave on 11 July 2008.). The subscription policies of PBWorks (the company that hosts these wikis) changed recently. These changes increased the amount of storage available to the free subscription option, so when it came time to renew, I let the paid subscription lapse and we're now working under PBWork's free option. Again, I'd like to thank Michael Mealling and Masten Space Systems for their past support.


And now back to our regular programming...


My name is Ken Davidian and I'm the owner. You can find out more about me here. I'm hoping that you'll at least read and think about the material you find here, but the real goal is that you contribute your thoughts and ideas in the appropriate places.


Listen to a description of this wiki, a 26-minute interview, excerpted from the complete show (2 hours) that aired on Sunday, 3 August 2008 on The Space Show with host Dr. David Livingston. Click here to listen to the complete show.



Ground Rules








Ground Rules


Before I get too far into Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How of this wiki, let me lay out the basic ground rules that the material in these pages will live by:


  1. This is an open and public page (for now, at least). That means that no material can be included here that is sensitive in any way. We will post no information about specific companies or individuals unless that information can be referenced to a publicly available source, such as a press release or news report. Any NASA material appearing on this wiki has been deemed appropriate for public release from its author(s) before being posted. Please make no presumption of privacy and assume that anything you write will appear in the New York Times or the Washington Post.
  2. All interactions shall be professional and courteous. Hopefully, some will even be funny and light-hearted. As much as I believe that there are no "sacred cows" (sorry, no disrespect meant to our Asian-Indian/Hindu friends!), I also believe that any conversation of differing viewpoints can be had in respectful ways. A corollary of this is don't use a sledge-hammer when all you really need to do is jab. Jabbing is good. Sledge-hammering is not.
  3. This Commercial Space wiki is non-political. No matter what political label one gives oneself, I believe that the interest in space and commercial space either (a) transcends those differences (i.e. we all can believe in the goodness of space), or (b) doesn't rise to a meaningful level in the political discussion (i.e. space is a tertiary-level issue *at best*). Either way, I decree that the same goes for this wiki. We can (and should, especially in an election year) talk politics, but let's check our personal politics at the door, and let's talk commercial space!
  4. If I see any behavior that I deem objectionable, I'll take corrective action. If you see any behavior that you deem objectionable, please let me know, and I'll figure out what to do about it. Because of a bunch of reasons, every aspect of this wiki is *not* a democracy, and some will be run in a very authoritarian way. All in all, I hope you'll find that I'm reasonable, but if I'm forced to draw boundaries, I may do so in very conservative ways. This wiki can be very valuable, but it's *nowhere near* losing my job over.
  5. I'll retain the right to make and add arbitrary ground rules as I see fit, or as my lawyers recommend. If this is a problem, please come to peace with it quickly.


Having gotten that out of the way, here are the basics of this wiki:




If you missed my self-introduction in the first paragraph, I'm Ken Davidian. I created this page with the intention of pulling together a number of activities in which I'm involved, including the communities associated with those activities. These groups include:


  • My colleagues within NASA who are part of my ad-hoc ESMD Commercial Development Team
  • Participants from the 2nd Next Generation Exploration Conference
  • Other intertested university students, like those in the AIAA Student Chapter at the University of Cincinnati I gave a talk to in late May
  • Participants in the AIAA Commercial Space Group (which is just in the formative stages)
  • Participants in the NASA Academy classes of 2008
  • NASA Academy alumni of past classes
  • Other interest parties


I expect this list to grow over time, and I think that's a good thing!


If you're a new contributor or follower of this wiki, please go to the FAQ-Twitter and Tweme file in the MISC folder and add your name to the list of people who others should follow on twitter. There's a table there that you can add your name, twitted userid, and affiliation. That way, when new people get onto twitter, they will easily know who they should follow to be in contact with everybody else.




This wiki will house a bunch of information that I've been kicking around with folks inside NASA for a long time.


  • BUSINESS. Includes "sub-folders" (not really) relating to Markets and Topics of Discussion pages.
  • MISC. This folder contains miscellaneous items, such as administrative pgase, and a list of acronyms as well as a Frequently Asked Questions file.
  • POLICY - REGULATORY - LEGAL. Includes sub-folders to the ESMD Commercial Development Policy (ECDP) as well as "Topics of Discussion" pages.
  • PRIZES. This includes a set of pages relating to specific prizes as well as to prizes in general.
  • TECHNICAL. Besides links to studies about different technical issues surrounding commercial space, this folder will also contain some "Topics of Discussion" pages.
  • The Roadmap. This is the folder that was created by the NASA Goddard Academy participants and includes working files for their project, whose short title is "The Roadmap".


Where and When


Here and now!




The purpose of this wiki is to enable a virtual collaboration of the divers group of professionals (in government agencies, the prime contracting community, and the emerging private sector) and individuals (students and private citizens) to support active projects and discussions pertaining to the emerging commercial space markets.




If you are interested in providing content to this wiki, it seems that I can do it multiple ways:


  1. It seems I need to send invites out to folks in order for them to be able to edit this wiki. If I have your email address already, I'll send you an invite to become a writer (contributor) to this wiki.
  2. If you're not on one of my email lists, then please just send me an email requesting  access and I'll  send you an invite to become a writer. 




If you have any questions or comments that you don't want to leave in this public forum, please feel free to email me at ken.davidian@gmail.com. Thanks!



  • Bass, F. M. (1969). A new product growth for model consumer durables. Management science, 15(5), 215-227.
  • Mahajan, V., Muller, E., & Bass, F. M. (1995). Diffusion of new products: Empirical generalizations and managerial uses. Marketing science14(3_supplement), G79-G88.>
  • Bass, F. M. (1969). A new product growth for model consumer durables. Management science, 15(5), 215-227.
  • Mahajan, V., Muller, E., & Bass, F. M. (1995). Diffusion of new products: Empirical generalizations and managerial uses. Marketing science14(3_supplement), G79-G88.>
  • Bass, F. M. (1969). A new product growth for model consumer durables. Management science, 15(5), 215-227.
  • Mahajan, V., Muller, E., & Bass, F. M. (1995). Diffusion of new products: Empirical generalizations and managerial uses. Marketing science14(3_supplement), G79-G88.

Comments (9)

Ken Davidian said

at 7:21 am on Jun 27, 2008

I added a word cloud made in wordle.net using the text from the ESMD Commercial Development Policy.

If you have an idea of another, perhaps more appropriaet, document that we could use here instead of the ECDP for a word cloud graphic, please don't hesitate to suggest it!

Bradley Cheetham said

at 10:47 am on Jun 27, 2008

that looks very cool

Ken Davidian said

at 10:49 am on Jun 27, 2008

Here's a link to the page I created with some other ECDP word clouds I generated!


Ken Davidian said

at 4:32 pm on Jan 1, 2009

I added a new word cloud based on a document I'm working on for AST, and subsequently changed the name of the word cloud page, so it can now be found at the following URL:



Ken Davidian said

at 11:21 am on Mar 28, 2009

This is a test of the RSS Feed I'm trying to install on the CSWiki!

Ken Davidian said

at 12:33 pm on Mar 28, 2009

Here's another test of the Firefox RSS feed capability...

Joel Raupe said

at 4:31 am on Jun 3, 2009

Looking like a excellent living document, Ken. Thank you for allowing us to participate.

Carl (Surfduke) Hewlett said

at 8:11 am on Aug 9, 2010

Looking forward to updates on the current events of private ventures into LEO and BEO.

Carl (Surfduke) Hewlett said

at 7:05 am on Aug 27, 2010

Is there any new information on the progress towards the next Falcon 9 flight?

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