Adrenaline junkies will soon be able to face strong emotions as space tourism begins to come to life.
All you need is patience. And a lot of money.
Who is offering space flights?
Two companies are offering several-minute space flights, billionaire Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin and Virgin Galactic, founded by Richard Branson.
The Blue Origin Company rocket launches vertically, the capsule falls when it reaches the right height and then the team lands on Earth with three parachutes.
Virgin Galactic uses massive aircraft carriers, launching on the horizontal runway and then launching rockets with space launch power.
In either case, up to six passengers can get up from their seats to experience a few minutes without weight and watch the views of the Earth from Space.
When can you go to Space?
Virgin Galactic has said that regular commercial flights will start in 2022, after conducting two more tests. The waiting list is relatively long, as 600 tickets have been sold so far, reports the AFP news agency.
But the company expects to operate about 400 flights a year.
Blue Origin plans two more flights this year, the first in September and “many more” next year.
Another way to get into Space is through television. An upcoming TV show, Space Hero, has said it plans to send the race winner to the International Space Station in 2023.
How much will the trip cost?
The first tickets sold by Virgin Galactic are priced between 200 thousand and 250 thousand dollars each, but the company has warned that the price may increase in the future.
Blue Origin has not announced any price.
Are the fitness requirements strict?
No – everyone is required to be in normal physical condition. Virgin Galactic company trainings last only five days.
Blue Origin promises to teach everyone everything they need “the day before departure”.
On Blue Origin’s first space flight with the team, part of the team was aviation pioneer Wally Funk, 82, who has now become the oldest astronaut to have made such a flight.
The company’s requirements for the flight include climbing seven pairs of stairs within 90 seconds and being 152 centimeters long and 50 kilograms or 193 centimeters and about 100 kilograms.
Elon Musk’s company is also entering the space tourism game, but its plans are for longer trips. The price of travel is also expected to be astronomical – tens of millions of dollars.
US billionaire Jared Isaacman has embarked on a mission called Inspiration4, which includes him, along with three other passengers around Earth, on a journey believed to be via a SpaceX rocket.
Then, in January 2022, the three businessmen will travel to the International Space Station with an experienced astronaut. The mission, titled Ax-1, is being organized by Axiom Space, which has signed agreements with Spacex for the next three flights.
Billionaire Musk’s company is planning a four-person orbit trip hosted by Space Adventures – the same company that organized the flight of Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa to the International Space Station in December on a Russian Soyuz spacecraft.
Maezawa is also expected to make a trip to the Moon in 2023, via a spacecraft that is still being developed by the company SpaceX.
He has invited eight members of the public to join him – but the application period is now over.