We are currently witnessing the confluence of several powerful economic and policy forces in the global space sector. Due to governmental financial constraints, NASA budgets are contracting and commercialization of space markets is increasing rapidly. The lack of a clear civil space vision, matched with an unpredictable long term science and engineering prioritization mechanism, is perpetuating a cycle of budgetary, financial, and mission uncertainties. However, uncertainty in government creates private opportunity. Public-private partnerships, among other models, have been demonstrated as viable methods to meet government satellite communications requirements. Can these models also provide a new private financing model for government needs in space science missions?
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