Sarah Nilsson JD, PhD, MAS
Sarah NilssonJD, PhD, MAS



Founded in 1999 by Jeff Greason, Doug Jones, Dan DeLong, and Aleta Jackson

Located in Mojave, California at the Mojave Air and Space Port and Midland, Texas
Goal was to develop single-stage-to-orbit aircraft
Did not release their business plan to the public at first because of fear of ridicule
After 2001: Came out publicly about their goal


Wanted the aircraft to be able to have horizontal takeoffs and landings
Wanted to add rockets to a single-seat aircraft with the final goal being two-seated
Original aircraft design taken from aerospace entrepreneur Burt Rutan
Planned to have the aircraft capable of making four round trips to space daily
Have the aircraft be safe and relatively more affordable than current space travel priced at $95,000 per flight
More or less operate just like a commercial flight
Invented new composite material cleverly named Nonburnite which they used for their fuel tanks


July 2012-2015: Moved development and manufacturing to Midland, Texas - Test flights still at Mojave

2012: Progress was slow but XCOR received 5 million from investors

Relocation from Mojave to Midland Texas, Midland offers 10 Million to help move
Spring 2013: XCOR tests the 5k18, first fully piston-pump-fuel-engine fueled by kerosene and liquid oxygen
During Superbowl in 2013: Axe Deodorant company claimed it would use XCOR to send some lucky 23 customers into space dubbed “AxeTronauts”
2014: XCOR bought out Space Expedition Corporation (SXC) which gave them an additional 14 million
Criticism began to surface about the weight of the aircraft and how it would be capable of taking off a normal runway
Compared to competitor Virgin Galactic’s air-launched spacecraft
The further the team got into designing, the more difficult it became to find solutions, XCOR begins regretting traditional takeoff and landing format
2015: SXC shareholders aligned with investors to get rid of Greason
New CEO Jay Gibson assigned, Greason is now only in charge of engineering
By the end of the year Gibson removed Greason and the other co-founders from the company

Investments from Haiyin Capital, valued up to $140 million

May 2016: Halted Lynx spaceplane, focused on LOX/LH2 engine (20/~50 layoffs)

Engineering team left without good technical leadership and began to struggle even more to find solutions
The complete move to Midland, TX still unfinished crippling production
Gibson lays off 1/3 of the engineers and workers, production and engineering being done separately in two different locations
June 2017: CEO Gibson left, layoffs, and rehired contracts - Gibson joins Trump in a senior position at the Department of Defense.  XCOR rushes to assign Michael Blum as new CEO
Blum has no option but to let all employees go, searches for new investors to keep project going
On October 19, Michael Blum, a member of the board of directors, stated the company needed to make an agreement with an investor because they were running out of money
November 2017, after failure to find to investors, XCOR declares Chapter 7 Bankruptcy


XCOR Aerospace files for bankruptcy



Modified Rutan Long-EZ

○Rocket propelled
First flight July 2001
Flew at 2008 Oshkosh AirVenture

Lynx rocket plane Mark I/II

Superseded Xerus space plane

Announced March 2008, operational in 2 years  (2012, 15, 16)

Designed for sub-orbital flights with passenger or payload

- Multiple flights a day with reusable engines

282 pre-purchased tickets ($100k), most not refunded


Agile Aero

Jeff Greason, Dan DeLong and Aleta Jackson left XCOR to start a new company in 2015

Goal was to create rapid prototyping for space launch

Contact Me

Sarah Nilsson, J.D., Ph.D., MAS


602 561 8665


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The information on this website is for EDUCATIONAL purposes only and DOES NOT constitute legal advice. 

While the author of this website is an attorney, she is not YOUR attorney, nor are you her client, until you enter into a written agreement with Nilsson Law, PLLC to provide legal services.

In no event shall Sarah Nilsson be liable for any special, indirect, or consequential damages relating to this material, for any use of this website, or for any other hyperlinked website.



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