A 27-square-mile area of land in southern New Mexico is the home of the world’s first purpose-built commercial spaceport, Spaceport America. A key factor to the success of the airport is a runway that can support the excessive weight and abuse from both aircraft and spacecraft taking off and landing.
This is not new territory, as runways built for extreme tolerances are in use throughout the country, particularly at Air Force bases. Molzin Corbin of Albuquerque designed the runway. Working with David Montoya Construction Inc. (the concrete airfield contractor), and A-Core Concrete Cutting Specialists (the sawing and sealing sub-contractor), D.S. Brown supplied more than 300,000 linear feet of pavement seals, which were installed through a self-propelled installation machine called a Delastall Kompressor. A-Core performed the installation using only one Kompressor machine. The installation occurred over several months.
The actual date of the first space flight is unknown, but likely in the next few years. The state-funded $200 million spaceport will provide cutting edge facilities and a location for fledgling astronauts to realize their dreams through civilian space flight marketed by Virgin Galactic.