The Space Transportation Development Division, formerly the Space Systems Development Division, provides a broad range of space systems engineering and space policy capabilities to support AST's facilitation of a safe, efficient, and successful U.S. commercial space transportation industry. This division is the primary channel for developing and maintaining Federal interagency coordination and agreements and manages and executes several key AST programs and initiatives.

The AST Environmental Program

The Space Transportation Development Division manages and executes AST's environmental functions in support of the commercial space transportation licensing and permitting process to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Specifically, this division analyzes the environmental impacts of proposed licensed and permitted actions, including the licensing of launch and reentry activities, the operation of launch and reentry sites, and the issuing of permits for suborbital reusable rockets. It then takes the appropriate action required under NEPA. This division also manages the AST Environmental Management System.

FAA Space Transportation Infrastructure Matching Grants Program

The Space Transportation Development Division manages the FAA Space Transportation Infrastructure Matching (STIM) Grants Program. This program was established for the purpose of ensuring the resiliency of the space transportation infrastructure in the United States. The U.S. Congress mandated the Grants Program under 51 U.S.C. Chapter 511 Space Infrastructure Matching Grants, which authorizes the use of Federal monies in conjunction with matching state, local government, and private funds.

Under this program, development projects eligible for funding include technical and environmental studies; construction, improvement, and design and engineering of space transportation infrastructure, including facilities and associated equipment; and real property to meet the needs of the United States commercial space transportation industry. FY 2010 was the first year that Federal funds were appropriated.


Daniel Murray, Manager, Space Transportation Development Division