Joel Wells

Kennedy Space Center, FL

Phone: (321) 867-2468

Edward Ellegood

Spaceport Florida Authority

Phone: (321) 730-5301

KSC Release No. 50-00

Florida’s ongoing efforts to expand and diversify the
state’s space industry will be significantly enhanced with a $14 million
investment that is included in the FY-2001 budget signed last week by
Governor Jeb Bush. The funds will support the construction of a Space
Experiment, Research & Processing Laboratory (SERPL) at NASA’s Kennedy Space
Center (KSC), and a roadway to serve the SERPL and a 400 acre Space Station
Commerce Park on KSC property.

“The state is investing in the future of its space industry,
and in the success of the International Space Station,” said Lt. Governor
Frank Brogan. “The SERPL and the Space Station Commerce Park will provide
ground-floor access to the boundless opportunities that will be explored in
Earth orbit and beyond.”

The SERPL will be an approximately $43 million facility
through which government, commercial and academic research projects from
around the world will flow on their way to and from the International Space
Station. As part of the $43 million, NASA is contributing $9 million for
design and activation, and Delaware North Park Services, NASA’s Visitor
Complex concessionaire, is allocating $4 million for the Space Station
Commerce Park roadway. Funds required to complete the facility construction
will be proposed for the state’s FY-2002 budget. The 100,000 square-foot
facility, which will be constructed by the state over a 25-month period,
will feature shared-use laboratories where Florida university researchers
will collaborate on a day-to-day basis with NASA, industry and international
research organizations.

The SERPL will also serve as a “magnet facility” for the
Space Station Commerce Park, which will be available for industry,
government and academic space programs that will benefit from having close
proximity to the launch pads, landing sites and other infrastructure at the
Cape Canaveral Spaceport. The park will be incrementally developed as new
programs come forward.

“The new era ushered in by the International Space Station
and next generation launch vehicles will bring with it new global
competition in space.” said KSC Director Roy Bridges. “NASA’s partnership
with the State of Florida will increase the entire nation’s competitive
posture through improved infrastructure for space transportation and
research, expanded support from academia, and new opportunities for

Construction management for the SERPL will be provided by
the Florida Department of Management Services, under contract to the
Spaceport Florida Authority. Upon completion, the SERPL facility will be
co-managed by NASA and the Florida Space Research Institute, using the
University of Florida as its lead institution.

# # #

NOTE TO EDITORS: Still photos of recent life sciences research at KSC are
available at the KSC Press site or at KSC’s website under
Publishers Photo Corner.