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In new space race, enter the entrepreneurs

Private-sector space stations could be available as early as 2014, billionaire Robert Bigelow tells The New York Times' Kenneth Chang. Chang writes about his tour of Bigelow Aerospace's North Las Vegas space station factory ... where "the biggest hole" in Bigelow's space station scheme is finding a reliable, affordable way to get to orbit. Lockheed Martin has dropped Bigelow as a partner, but Boeing has picked him up. Another potential launch provider is Bigelow's fellow traveler in the new space race, SpaceX's Elon Musk. Check out my Bigelow Aerospace travelogue from 2006, this more recent update, and the last six paragraphs of this item.