Space Tourism: It’s Closer than You Think

Commercial Space Flight

Commercial Space Flight

Space travel may no longer be restricted to astronauts as industry leaders around the world are working to develop commercial space flight and to make space tourism the new thing to do over winter vacation. Just how close are we to making space tourism and commercial space flight something that the middle class can do, instead of just the extremely wealthy?

Cyberspace Hot Shots in a Commercial Space Race

Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen unveiled plans last week for a new commercial spaceship that, instead of blasting off a launch pad, would be carried high into the atmosphere by the widest plane ever built before it fires its rockets. Allen joins Silicon Valley powerhouses Elon Musk of PayPal and Jeff Bezos of Amazon.com Inc. in a new private space race that attempts to fill the gap left when the U.S. government ended the space shuttle program.

The first test flight of the ambitious venture by Allen’s new company Stratolaunch Systems is not scheduled until 2015, Stratolaunch Systems isn’t the only one in this space race. Virgin Galactic is well known in the industries of commercial space flight and space tourism, as well as Boeing and Zero G Corporation.

The Progress Toward Commercial Space Flight and Space Tourism

Right now, this space race is focused on building a commercial vehicle that can bring people into orbit, or suborbit, and can bring them back as safely and as affordable as possible. Yes, everyone would like to go into space, but it currently costs several thousands dollars per person to do so. Blue Origin, which was founded by Bezos, is developing a fully reusable suborbital vehicle called New Shepard, which is capable of flying three or more passengers on suborbital flights. Boeing’s Commercial Space Transportation-100 space capsule is being designed to carry astronauts and supplies to the space station, but the aerospace giant has also partnered with Space Adventures to sell passenger seats for future CST-100 flights.

Space Adventures Taking the Lead in Space Tourism

There’s definitely a market for space tourism and commercial space flight as several thousand people have already ventured into outer space. Since the company’s first flight in 2004, Zero G Corp., which is owned by Space Adventures, has flown over 6,000 people, including former Apollo astronaut Buzz Aldrin, and celebrities such as Martha Stewart, rocker Ozzy Osbourne and famed astrophysicist Stephen Hawking. Space Adventures is an American space tourism company that arranges multimillion-dollar trips to the International Space Station for extremely wealthy clients. The firm is the only company that has booked private flights to the space station, and brokered those deals with the Russian Federal Space Agency, to charge customers about $35 million for rides on Russian-built Soyuz spacecraft.

Photo Source: Space.com

Avatar
Carrie Ann
Carrie Ann is Editor-in-Chief at Industry Leaders Magazine, based in Las Vegas. Carrie covers technology, trends, marketing, brands, productivity, and leadership. When she isn’t writing she prefers reading. She loves reading books and articles on business, economics, corporate law, luxury products, artificial intelligence, and latest technology. She’s keen on political discussions and shares an undying passion for gadgets. Follow Carrie Ann on Twitter, Facebook

Recent Posts

Hyundai commits $7.4 billion in US investment by 2025

Hyundai commits $7.4 billion in US investment by 2025

South Korea’s Hyundai Motor Co., announced on Thursday it will soon start manufacturing electric vehicles in the United States. The automaker plans to produce EVs, upgrade produc
8 hours ago
US inflation report of 4.2 percent raises concerns

US inflation report of 4.2 percent raises concerns

The US reported the highest inflation recorded in the last dozen years at 4.2 percent in April, riding on government stimulus packages, improved energy prices, better spending and
11 hours ago
Aon – Willis asset disposal aims to ease approval of $30 billion merger

Aon – Willis asset disposal aims to ease approval of $30 billion merger

Aon Plc and Willis Towers Watson have agreed to sell $3.6 billion worth of assets to rival Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. in a bid to appease European competition regulators over th
1 day ago
Roblox declares Q1, reports $387 million revenue as bookings increase

Roblox declares Q1, reports $387 million revenue as bookings increase

Roblox, the hugely popular online gaming platform, reported its first-quarter earnings after becoming a listed company. Its revenue more than doubled as the videogame company benef
2 days ago
Weak US job report results in volatile market

Weak US job report results in volatile market

A weak job report resulted in a record close on Friday for the US stocks. The US labor department’s monthly non-farm payrolls report revealed employers hired 266,000 new workers
3 days ago
Star and Blackstone launch bids to buyout Australia’s Crown Resorts

Star and Blackstone launch bids to buyout Australia’s Crown Resorts

A bidding war has broken out between Australian casino company Star Entertainment Group and US private equity investor Blackstone Group over Crown Resorts, Australia’s bigges
3 days ago