Planetary experts say that the space travel dreams of the three billionaires are more than just fantasy
It may take a few years for most Canadians to afford a ticket to outer space, but some planetary experts say that the upcoming space launch led by billionaires may usher in a new era of space exploration.
On Sunday, if the launch from New Mexico is successful, Sir Richard Branson, the founder of Virgin Galactic, will become the first of three billionaires to enter space.
Nine days later, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin plan was launched from Texas, and Tesla founder Elon Musk’s SpaceX plans to launch later this year.
This is what Kate Howells, the Canadian Space Policy Advisor of the Planetary Society, the world’s largest non-profit space organization, called the beginning of the next era of space tourism.
Howells and others say that if space travel becomes more affordable and frequent, researchers from universities and private companies may have faster ways to travel in space.
“Previously, the only way for tourists to get into space was to fly to the International Space Station. This has not happened for many years,” she said.
“This takes space tourism to a new level and opens up a more affordable-still not very affordable-but more affordable way for tourists to enter space.”
The fare for getting on the bus is not cheap, Someone paid $28 million in the auction Get a seat on Bezos’ first flight to suborbital space.
If the launch is successful, Virgin Galactic and the Blue Origin spacecraft will be close to or at the edge of space. The International Aviation Federation, the world’s air movement management agency, defines the boundary between the Earth’s atmosphere and outer space as 100 kilometers above the Earth’s average sea level, the so-called Carmen Line.
But these ships will have enough height to give both crew members the opportunity to experience weightlessness for a few minutes.
“This is part of what you pay for the experience,” said Marc Boucher, founder and editor-in-chief of SpaceQ Media Inc., a Canadian online space news company based in London, Ontario.
New space race, new research
This year’s space race is very different from the moon landing race of the 1960s. Sara Mazrouei said that the definition of modern race is mainly competition and the dream of commercializing space flight. Planetary scientist and educational developer at Ryerson University in Toronto.
But planetary experts like Mazrouei and Howells say that this space race can also bring some benefits to the planet.
If space travel becomes easier, research in suborbital space may happen more frequently-which may lead to exciting discoveries.
“The last space race in which we must go to the moon provided technology for our running shoes, foam mattresses and bulletproof vests,” Mazrui said.
“I really hope that once we surpass the original group of billionaires into space, there will be room for other experiments and more participation.”
According to the European Space Agency, Virgin Galactic, Blue Origin, and SpaceX all call for so-called payloads on their websites, referring to components on spacecraft that are specifically used to generate mission data and then transmit these data back to Earth.
Boucher said the potential research opportunities are exciting.
“We must understand that there is a lot of research currently being done in space. Many of them are conducted on the International Space Station, but it is really expensive,” he said.
“As a result, these opportunistic flights on these new suborbital vehicles will provide much cheaper costs for conducting certain research.”