Space tourism: what’s on offer for these great adventures

Washington.- A few minutes or a few days of weightlessness. A little jump above the Earth’s atmosphere, or a round trip to the Moon … the age of spacial tourism And, for those who can afford it, it comes with many options.

SpaceX

1 – Inspiration4

The company of Elon Musk will send four passengers for three days into space on Wednesday. They take off from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida aboard a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule mounted on a Falcon 9 rocket.

The mission, chartered by US pilot and billionaire Jared Isaacman, will fly past the International Space Station (ISS) and will be the first orbital mission involving four non-professional astronauts.

Space tourism: what’s on offer for these great adventures. Photo: Pixabay

2 – Ax-1

In January 2022, three businessmen will visit the ISS, along with an experienced former NASA astronaut.

The mission, which will last 10 days and is called Ax-1, is organized by the company Axiom Space, which has signed up for another three future flights with SpaceX. They will operate in the US segment of the ISS, where they will conduct scientific experiments.

3 – Space Adventures

SpaceX has plans for another orbital trip for four paying customers, organized by Space Adventures, the company that organized trips for seven tourists to the ISS between 2001 and 2009 aboard Russian rockets.

4 – “dearMoon”

Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa will take a trip around the Moon, presumably in 2023, aboard a SpaceX Starship rocket still in development. The mission is called “dearMoon”.

Virgin Galactic

The Virgin Galactic experience involves a huge carrier plane taking off from a runway, reaching high altitude, and then dropping a rocket-powered space plane accelerating into space.

Passengers and crew experience a few minutes of weightlessness at altitudes above 50 miles, the American definition of space. Virgin Galactic founder Richard Branson took part in a test flight on July 11 from New Mexico.

The company is currently under investigation for a “mishap” during the flight. Expect to have routine flights in 2022.

Blue Origin

Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin also offers a few minutes of weightlessness, but at altitudes above 100 kilometers. Its astronauts thus cross the Karman line, the internationally recognized limit of space. The reusable rocket takes off vertically and the capsule detaches in flight.

Its descent to return to Earth is slowed by three huge parachutes and a thruster. The Amazon founder was one of the first four passengers to make the trip from the company’s base in West Texas on July 20.

Russian plans

Russia will send an actress and a film director to the ISS in October, aboard a Soyuz rocket. The objective: to shoot the first fictional film in orbit and with zero gravity.

Yusaku Maezawa will also travel to the ISS in December in a Soyuz. The trip will last 12 days and is organized through Space Adventures.

The company announced another mission to the ISS in 2023 on a Russian rocket, for two participants, one of whom will have the opportunity to conduct a spacewalk.

Space globe

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Other companies develop less ambitious projects, such as Space Perspective, whose capsule, hoisted by a space balloon the size of a football stadium, offers a view of the curvature of the Earth.

Tickets cost $ 125,000, but the balloon ascends only 30 kilometers, which means that passengers will not experience weightlessness.

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