SpaceX is finally going to send about 3 tourists to the International Space Station on a 10-day trip sometime late during the year 2021. SpaceX will be suing the Falcon 9 rocket and their new spacecraft named Crew Dragon, as per the company’s announcement. This is the 2nd biggest announcement on tourism by SpaceX this year.
This space vacation is the part of the deal that saw SpaceX signing a deal with Axiom Space; the Houston-based startup company which will be managing all the logistics of this trip for the 3 private citizens. Although nearly 7 of the private citizens have been on the ISS but this mission is going to be the first fully private trip for the ISS.
Time table and Cost of the Trip:-
These 3 space tourists are going to spend about 2 days traveling to and from the ISS and then spend about 8 days on board the space station where they will share the space with the astronauts working there.
The price of one ticket for this private orbital vacation is about 55 million dollars and one has already been booked. This trip has been made possible following the announcement of NASA from last year when they said that they would be opening the ISS for more commercial activities such as Space Tourism.
SpaceX broadening their Space Tourism horizons:-
However, Space is simply not focusing on being a taxi for the astronaut. SpaceX is already embracing this Space Tourism industry as its new potential stream for generating revenue. One month ago, SpaceX announced that they are working with a Space Tourism company named Space Adventures for sending 4 private citizens into the Earth’s orbit sometime either in late 2021 or in early 2022.
Other Companies interested in Space Tourism:-
In addition to SpaceX, many other world private companies have also started showing interest in the ability to reach the space. One of them is the Virgin Galactic of the billionaire Richard Branson. Virgin Galactic is the first publically-traded space tourism company that is making plans for an offer multiple adventurists a few minutes of experiencing the weightlessness in the company’s massive Spaceplane for a sum of a few hundred thousand dollars.
Another company in the same regards is named Blue Origin; a spaceflight company which is owned by Jeff Bezos. This company is also planning to offer such brief experiences to the tourists who will ride to space in the company’s New Shepherd rocket.
As for the startup named Axiom Space, they say that there could be a lot more trips to the ISS after this first one. Michael Suffredini, CEO of Axiom Space said, “This history-making flight will represent a watershed moment in the march toward universal and routine access to space. This will be just the first of many missions to ISS to be completely crewed and managed by Axiom Space – a first for a commercial entity. Procuring the transportation marks significant progress toward that goal, and we’re glad to be working with SpaceX in this effort.”