OPIFEX GLOBAL

About

Capable. Resilient. Well-Trained.

 

Background

We have a passion for space and saw an opportunity to think bigger about the future. By watching and learning from the masters of space training (NASA) we developed a similar training program aimed at providing labor services for commercial space. We have been developing our training for the last few years, preparing to offer labor services to the commercial industry.

Our first water training company (Fathom Academy) was designed and built in Austin, Texas. This indoor swiftwater rescue training facility is the first of its kind worldwide. Fathom Academy now provides training services to Federal, State, and Local agencies as well as fire, law enforcement, and rescue units from all around the globe.

I’m a former Navy EOD Diver, and I also spent 10 years in the film industry watching realistic sets get built then torn down without having alternate ways to use them. I thought these film sets could be used to better train people who worked in risky environments: First-Responders, Astronauts, Military, and Commercial Labor. I saw an opportunity to change water training globally by combining realistic environments with military style training. The result is a more reliable, accurate, safe, repeatable training experience.

- Barton Bollfrass, Founder


 

Opifex Global’s History.

2017-Q4, Participated in SpaceCom CisLunar Roundtable on developing a space economy.

2018-Q1, We create designs for a privatized, commercial astronaut training facility.

2018-Q2, Completed construction on our first neutral-buoyancy training tank.

2018-Q3, NASA sends team from the NBL to visit and tour the training facility.

2018-Q4, Speak at SpaceCom on panel with NanoRacks, Boeing, and Orbital ATK.

2019-Q1, Began developing a pressurized EVA Lunar spacesuit and helmet.

2019-Q2, Presented our astronaut training plans to the United States Government.

2019-Q3, Created a candidate recruitment pipeline with a nearby university.

2019-Q4, Begin testing our lunar spacesuit in vacuum chamber and cold chamber.

 

The Journey

Blast-Off ATX 2015 - Hosted by Paul Baffes, Austin Economic Development Board - Space Economy Task Force. Gary Cadenhead, director of The University of Texas Master of Science in Technology program, introduces panelists to the audience.

Blast-Off ATX 2015 - Hosted by Paul Baffes, Austin Economic Development Board - Space Economy Task Force. Gary Cadenhead, director of The University of Texas Master of Science in Technology program, introduces panelists to the audience.

SpaceCom 2017 - Working in Space panel. Host Jason Crusan (NASA Advanced Exploration Systems) introduces panelists - Jeffrey Manber (NanoRacks), Barton Bollfrass (Opifex Global), Robert Richards (Orbital ATK),and John Elbon (Boeing).

SpaceCom 2017 - Working in Space panel. Host Jason Crusan (NASA Advanced Exploration Systems) introduces panelists - Jeffrey Manber (NanoRacks), Barton Bollfrass (Opifex Global), Robert Richards (Orbital ATK),and John Elbon (Boeing).

Opifex Global’s first underwater space training suit was custom-made by Aqualung; the helmets were provided by Gorski. The training suit made the cover of Underwater Magazine.

Opifex Global’s first underwater space training suit was custom-made by Aqualung; the helmets were provided by Gorski. The training suit made the cover of Underwater Magazine.

NBL team from NASA visits with our Head of Dive Operations.

NBL team from NASA visits with our Head of Dive Operations.


 

Management

 
 
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Partner

C. Barton Bollfrass

A former competitive swimmer, US Navy EOD Diver, Navy Surface Warfare Sonar Technician, Sea Lion Trainer, Dolphin Trainer, and designer of the world’s first indoor Swiftwater and flood training center, Bollfrass has spent a considerable amount of time focused on water-training. After pursuing degrees in engineering, film, and mechanical design he combined his talents to bring new and innovative water-training ideas to the space industry. Bollfrass pioneered some of the very first businesses to provide services for: 3D-printing, virtual-reality, STEM education, swiftwater training, and now astronaut training.

 

Education

Austin Community College
A.A.S, Mechanical Design, 2008

University of North Texas
B.A., Film & Television, 2000

Texas A&M University
Industrial Engineering, 1995(I)

Accomplishments

  • Pioneered virtual-reality data-analytics

  • First 3D-printing service bureau in the U.S.

  • (3) Letters of Commendation, US Navy

  • Navy League Award, Honorman Recruit

  • Scout Master, BSA Lifetime Member

  • Walter Cronkite Award for Children’s Journalism