A tour to space is becoming more popular with time. Many people have also shown some interest in being part of astronauts visiting space in case such an opportunity arises. For this reason, many investors have seen the need of venturing into the world of space tourism and different companies have come up with plans on how to take tourists to space. There are also different commercial space programs that are dedicated to taking you to another planet. Some of these programs are:
- Virgin Galactic
Virgin Galactic was founded by Sir Richard Branson in 2004 and their aim is taking tourists on suborbital flights. Their plan is using SpaceShipTwo spacecraft whose launching took place from an aircraft and not a rocket. Though Virgin Galactic hoped to complete their maiden voyage in 2009, there were a series of setbacks that continuously delayed that introductory trip.
The most severe setback Virgin Galactic suffered was the loss of the VSS Enterprise that took place in 2014 during a test flight. This resulted to the death of co-pilot Michael Alsbury. The company has however returned to testing this year with a strong test of VSS Unity that was able to reach an altitude of 84,271 feet.
- Orion Span
Orion Span confidently announced their Aurora Station plans in early April. They billed Aurora as the first luxury space hotel in the world. Aurora Station construction project has been scheduled to start in space in 2021and it is intended to use the company’s construction methodology and proprietary technology.
Aurora Station is set to have two concealed suites, with two crews and a total of four tourists per stay. Guests/tourists will first go through some training before embarking to their trip. The traditional 24-month training has now been reduced to three months. This is according to Frank Bunger who is the CEO of Orion Span.
- Blue Origin
Blue Origin has launched a New Shepherd Program that was named after Alan Shepherd who was the first American man to visit space. New Shepherd is still in development with the company’s plan of targeting its completion to be in late 2018 or early 2019. Their first flight with humans will take approximately 11 minutes and the guests will go through a one-day training prior to the flight.
The one day training will majorly include safety briefings, mission and vehicle overviews and mission stimulations. The tickets have not yet been released but they will be out very soon and it will cost cheaper compared to other short-duration missions.