Updated April, 2024 by Jonathan Roll

axiom station

Lead Institutions:  Axiom Space

Partner Institutions:  Thales Alenia


  • 2022 Sep – MOU’s with Turkey & the Saudi space commission for astronaut trips; Canada, Hungry & New Zealand for research
  • 2024 Feb – Ax-3 mission to ISS completed; 3 weeks duration; American-Italian-Turkish-Swedish crew

Target Dates:

  • 2024 – Multiple comprehensive design reviews
  • 2025 – Pressure vessel, once welding is completed by Thales Alenia, delivered to Axiom for integration.
  • 2026 (late) – Hab One to be launched to ISS

NASA NextSTEP Award:  $140 mil.

Envisioned Crew:  TBD
Power:  ?    Volume:  ?

Mission/Vision:  “Construction of the world’s first commercial space station”,  from modules attached to ISS to independence.”
Intended Capabilities:  Hab One (Ax-H1) intends to have 4 crew quarters with research and manufacturing capacity. Hab Two (Ax-H2) will ad four further crew quarters with added complete life-support systems. The Research & Manufacturing Facility (Ax-RMF) will be a module for state of the art research. And the Power Thermal Module (Ax-PTM) will expand on environmental, life support, storage, and payload capabilities.
ASU Engagement:  Axiom and ASU are both executive-level Commercial Spaceflight Federation members. ASU’s growing expertise across robotics-teaming & human systems engineering could add value to Axiom’s training programs. Additionally, ASU’s lessons-learned from convening a University Advisory Council for another LEO architecture could be leveraged on Axiom’s behalf.

orbital reef

Lead Institutions:  Blue Origin, Sierra Space

Partner Institutions:  Boeing, Redwire, AWS, Amazon Supply Chain, Genesis Engineering Solutions, IBM, Arizona State University


  • 2023 Apr – Blue Origin announces new 43k sq.ft. facility in Phoenix for “advanced spacecraft”
  • 2023 Dec – Completed tests for window systems & structural components demonstration
  • 2024 Jan – Received $42mil from unused Northrop withdrawn SAA and “other program funding”
  • 2024 Jan – LIFE module performed “ultimate burst pressure test”
  • 2024 Feb – Dream Chaser underwent Sine Vibration Testing, before upcoming T-Vac testing
  • 2024 Mar – Testing milestones for 4 critical life support systems: trace contaminant control, water contaminant oxidation, urine water recovery, water tank test
  • 2024 Mar – Leadership from Blue Origin & Sierra Space publish article in NPJ Microgravity journal discussing opportunities and updated intent

Target Dates:

  • 2024 Aug – (supporting) Blue Origin’s New Glenn test flight
  • 2024 (mid) – (supporting) Sierra’s Dream Chaser undergoes T-vac testing
  • 2026 – (supporting) Sierra’s crewed Dream Chaser orbital test flight
  • 2027 – Orbital Reef operational

NASA Commercial LEO Destinations Award:  $130 mil. + $42 mil.

Envisioned Crew:  6-10
Power:  ?    Volume:  830m3

Mission/Vision:  “Space station business park with straightforword access for all.”
Intended Capabilities:  Capacities will include “Transport logistics, Leased space, Utilities, Multiple docking berths.” Will provide help with system hardware development, robotic and crew-tended operations and servicing & habitation amenities. 4-6 permanent crew.”
ASU Engagement:  ASU leads the Orbital Reef University Advisory Council, a global consortium of 14 universities (including Stanford & Oxford) with expertise in space and microgravity research. The Council will “focus academic community needs, stimulate research, advise novice researchers, evolve standards of conduct, and lead STEM outreach.”


Lead Institutions:  Voyager Space/Nanoracks

Partner Institutions:  Airbus, Mitsubishi Corps, Northrop Grumman (Cygnus spacecraft), The Ohio State University, ASU/MILO, University of Michigan, Purdue University


  • 2022 Oct – Plans for GWCSP terrestrial component to be established at the Ohio State Univ.
  • 2023 Jan – Airbus supplants Lockheed Martin as main partner with Voyager on project.
  • 2023 Nov – Voyager Space & Airbus sign MOU with European Space Agency (ESA)
  • 2023 Dec – Three milestones completed: SDR, optical link demo, alternative urine processor demo
  • 2024 Jan – Received $57.5mil from unused Northrop withdrawn SAA and “other program funding”
  • 2024 Jan – Voyager/Nanoracks buys SpaceX launch (intended to be on Starship) for later in the decade
  • 2024 Jan – Voyager & Airbus start official Starlab Space LLC
  • 2024 Mar – Mitsubishi Corp. becomes strategic partner

Target Dates:

  • 2024 (late) – Optical link demo; Alternative urine processor demo
  • 2028 – Starlab Operational

NASA Commercial LEO Destinations Award:  $160 mil. + $57.5 mil

Envisioned Crew:  4
Power:  60kW    Volume:  340m3

Mission/Vision:  “Multifunctional Station for commerce & innovation, business and science.”
Intended Capabilities:  “Inflatable habitat, robotic arm for servicing cargo and external payloads, Ohio State Univ.’s George Washington Carver Science Park (GWCSP) state-of-the art lab will host advanced research and science covering 4 core topics & an open workbench.”
ASU Engagement:  ASU is informally part of discussion with Ohio State University on GWCSP research plans.


Lead Institutions:  Vast Space

Partner Institutions:  SpaceX (for launch),  AnySignal (RF connectivity & sensing platform)


  • 2024 Feb – Announced would bid on NASA’s private astronaut mission opportunities alongside Axiom.
  • 2024 Mar – Hired Clay Mowry as advisor (priorly of Voyager, Blue Origin, Arianespace, & IAF)

Target Dates:

  • 2025 (late) – Launching LEO research habitation module; Launching Vast-1 crewed mission shortly after.

NASA Collaborations for Commercial Space Capabilities-2 (CCSC-2) Agreement:  Unfunded, but NASA shared data & expertise

Envisioned Crew:  4 crew
Power:  Up to 1,000 watts    Volume:  ?

Mission/Vision:  “The world’s first commercial space station, a single-module station supports both crew and payloads, and provides both microgravity and Lunar artificial gravity environments.”
Intended Capabilities:   “The station plans to have logistics on board to facilitate docking with Dragon. With the addition of the Dragon spacecraft, Haven-1 would be able to sustain 4-crew missions with 24/7 communication facilities, up to 150 kg of preloaded cargo mass, and science, research, and in-space manufacturing opportunities for up to 30 days. Haven-1 also plans to be able to offer a variety of amenities and facilities to paying customers, such as having a large window dome on board for photography and viewing, always-on internet through onboard Wi-Fi, resting rooms, and more.”
ASU Engagement:

(Withdrawn) northrop grumman

commercial space station

NASA Press Release, Oct. 4, 2023:  Link

Lead Institutions:  Northrop Grumman

Partner Institutions:  Dynetics, Star Harbor


  • 2022 Sep – Northrop Grumman and Star Harbor partner on market research & crew training.
  • 2022 Oct – Iterate off Cygnus heritage; Lower tech risk and reliable; Differs from flashy first-time competitors’ hardware and design.
  • Current SAA gets them through PDR.

Target Dates:

  • 2027 – NG Commercial Space Station operational

NASA Commercial LEO Destinations Award:  $125.6 mil.

Envisioned Crew:  4-6
Power:  ?    Volume:  150-300m3

Mission/Vision:  “Space-as-a-service commercial LEO station to continue work of the ISS
Intended Capabilities:   “Heritage-heavy from Cygnus & HALO for rapid deployment & modular expansion to meet the growing needs of the space economy. Multiple docking ports, crew habitats, labs, movie production, crew ailocks, and facillities capable of providing artifical gravity, in-space manufactuing, external payloads platform support and science & research support.”
ASU Engagement:  Northrop Grumman’s “launch business components” have facillities in Phoenix. Perhaps ASU could consult at some point with this station’s institutional team on lessons-learned and best practices from the orbital Reef University Advisory Council once it gets underway?


Axiom Station

Orbital Reef  (Blue Origin & Sierra Space)

Starlab  (Voyager Space/Nanoracks)

Haven-1  (Vast Space)

(withdrawn)  Northrop Grumman’s Commercial Space Station

International Space Station

Lunar Gateway