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  Space Adventures: 140 private astronauts by 2020

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Author Topic:   Space Adventures: 140 private astronauts by 2020
328KF
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Posts: 829
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Registered: Apr 2008

posted 05-06-2011 08:44 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for 328KF   Click Here to Email 328KF     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
According to Parabolic Arc (a great website for space tourism news, by the way) Space Adventures conducted a survey that came up with some interesting results and predictions.
  • The 140 private individuals flying in space through 2020 does not include flights paid for by NASA or foreign governments
  • Figures are based on the availability of the International Space Station and two private commercial destinations in low Earth orbit
  • Tickets would be sold through direct sales to individuals, lotteries, media promotions, corporate ventures, etc.
  • Prices will remain in the $20-$50 million during this period
  • Prices could come down if a commercial provider introduces a vehicle that can be reused multiple times without requiring a significant overhaul
  • Russia is building a new 4-6 seat vehicle set to debut around 2017 that could open up additional seats
  • Other factors that could impact upon the numbers negatively include:
    • Early ending to one of space station programs
    • Global economic meltdown
    • Accidents by one of the commercial providers
  • Orbital spaceflight will require about two months of training ("I just don't see a way that training time down to anything less than 6 weeks")
  • In the 2020s, could be several thousand people flying to orbit

Robert Pearlman
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Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 05-07-2011 11:18 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Christian Science Monitor interviewed Jeff Foust about the study.
While the analysis has been performed by a company with a large dog in the hunt for commercial human-spaceflight business, it's conclusions are plausible, according to Jeff Foust, a senior analyst at Futron, an aerospace and technology consulting firm in Bethesda, Md. In 2002, Futron produced a detailed analysis of the potential market for space tourism to low-Earth orbit.

"The results are optimistic, but not unrealistic," he says, cautioning that most of the envisioned increase would likely take place toward the end of the decade. Not only is that when the new crop of privately financed rockets and capsules would be routinely available, but also Russia's Soyuz capsules – the mainstay of the past decade's trips for space tourists – are booked for space-station crew exchanges for the next several years now that the US space shuttle program is drawing to a close.

"You could come back and revisit this in a couple of years and say, 'Well, hardly anyone has flown, so where's that 140 number going to come from?'" he asks. "I think the answer is going to be: It really relies on a much greater supply of seats becoming available in the 2015-plus time frame."

All times are CT (US)

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