The Future Is Here: $75,000 Will Get You Into Space In 2017

World View Enterprises plans to offer balloon flights into space for private citizens. The trip into the stratosphere would give passengers a great view of Earth and a unique experience. Space.com reports that World View will carry a capsule containing six paying customers and two crew members to the edge of space using a huge […]
World View Enterprises plans to offer balloon flights into space for private citizens. The trip into the stratosphere would give passengers a great view of Earth and a unique experience. Space.com reports that World View will carry a capsule containing six paying customers and two crew members to the edge of space using a huge helium balloon. The capsule containing the space tourists weighs about 10,000 pounds (over 4,300 kilograms). The complete flight will last between five and six hours. The first 90 to 120 minutes involve the ascent to the stratosphere as the capsule is carried slowly up and up the balloon. The balloon will then cruise at 100,000 feet for about two hours. The return to Earth involves the separation of the balloon and the capsule. The capsule will be returned to Earth with the help of a device called a parafoil. World View has partnered with United Parachute Technologies (UPT) for the parafoil system. The companies announced earlier this year a successful flying of the first parafoil from the edge of space at a height of 102,200 earlier this year. This is right around the top height World View plans for its manned space tourist flights. Space.com says World View’s goal is start launching paying customers into space by late 2017. Tickets will cost $75,000 per seat. World View provides this video that shows what a trip aboard one of its flights might be like. Take a look:


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SpaceX To Make First Commercial Cargo Run To Space Station April 30

The first commercial cargo to the International Space Station will be shipped by Space Exploration Technologies Corp., better known as SpaceX, starting April 30.  If the company is successful, it will be the first time a private spacecraft docks with the space station. “NASA’s International Space Station program, along with our international partners, will take […]
The first commercial cargo to the International Space Station will be shipped by Space Exploration Technologies Corp., better known as SpaceX, starting April 30.  If the company is successful, it will be the first time a private spacecraft docks with the space station. “NASA’s International Space Station program, along with our international partners, will take a look at the readiness of both station and SpaceX for the mission. If all is go, then SpaceX will be given a green light for an April 30 launch,”NASA officials said. The Dragon capsule will be completely unmanned like the Russian, European and Japanese capsules that currently run supply missions to the space station. SpaceX engineers designed the Dragon capsule to be used multiple times, unlike conventional supply ships which burn up while reentering the atmosphere. Using the Dragon capsule costs NASA per $133 million per delivery, far less than the $300 million it costs just to build a conventional capsule. The Dragon capsule is part of the 2006 Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) directive designed to coordinate supply and passenger delivery by private companies to the International Space Station. NASA signed agreements with three companies, but SpaceX is the closest to reaching the space station. Orbital Sciences, another company that is a part of the COTS program, will launch its unmanned spacecraft for the first time later in 2012. Elon Musk, founder of SpaceX, said he hopes to bring astronauts aboard the Dragon capsule within the next few years, according to Forbes. SpaceX completed its first crew trial on Friday, demonstrating that the capsule could carry either seven crew members or 13,000 pounds (5,900 kilograms) of cargo safely.


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