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Ohio State to Host Voyager Space’s Earth-Based Research Park

By Rachel Jewett | September 20, 2022

The Starlab commercial space station. Photo: Nanoracks

Voyager Space has chosen Ohio State to host the Earth-based component of the George Washington Carver Science Park, a research park in space. 

The George Washington Carver Science Park is currently operating on the International Space Station (ISS) and is made up of Nanoracks research hardware, including Bishop Airlock. Voyager Space plans for the future GWCSP to operate on its commercial space station Starlab, and for there to be an analog replica of the laboratory on Earth. 

That lab will be located at Ohio State, in partnership with the state of Ohio, JobsOhio, and One Columbus. Next year, the organizations plan to break ground on a new facility on the Ohio State Aerospace and Air Transportation Campus. 

The terrestrial lab is set to include high-bay laboratory space, for scientific research experiments related to Starlab activities and supporting spaceflight research. Ohio State said some of the research in the lab could benefit the state’s agricultural industry in terms of water quality, crop genetics, production efficiency, and animal health. 

“Ohio is the birthplace of aviation and has a deep-rooted history in aerospace and defense innovation,” said Dylan Taylor, Chairman and CEO of Voyager Space. “Ohio offers the most beneficial location for a terrestrial facility to support the long-term success and utilization of George Washington Carver Science Park. Company researchers, operators, visionaries, and space change makers in Ohio will have the ability to influence and inspire organizations pursuing aerospace research and development.”

Voyager is on the Nanoracks-led team that is receiving $160 million in funding from NASA for Starlab as part of the Commercial Destination Free Flyers (CDFF) project. Lockheed Martin is also part of the Starlab team and will serve as the manufacturer and technical integrator.

Also this week, Voyager announced that Hilton will be Starlab’s official hotel partner and will collaborate with Voyager to develop space hospitality crew headquarters aboard Starlab for visiting astronauts.