Space tourism

« Back to Glossary Index

– Soviet Intercosmos program broadened pool of cosmonauts
– Included cosmonauts from Warsaw Pact countries
– Aimed at international cooperation in space exploration
– Paved the way for future international space missions
– Laid foundation for future space tourism initiatives

**Types of Space Tourism:**
– Orbital space tourism involves trips to space stations like the International Space Station
– Suborbital space tourism offers brief experiences of weightlessness
– Lunar space tourism aims to take tourists around the Moon
– Each type offers unique experiences and challenges
– Companies like SpaceX, Blue Origin, and Virgin Galactic are developing vehicles for these experiences

**History of Space Tourism:**
– From 2001 to 2009, seven space tourists made eight flights to the International Space Station
– Space Adventures, Roscosmos, and RSC Energia facilitated these trips
– Prices ranged from US$20-25 million per trip
– Russia halted orbital space tourism in 2010 due to ISS crew size increase
– Orbital tourist flights were set to resume in 2015 but were postponed indefinitely

**Recent Developments:**
– Russian orbital tourism resumed with Soyuz MS-20 launch in 2021
– NASA announced plans to allow private astronauts on the ISS starting in 2020
– SpaceX Crew Dragon and Boeing Starliner spacecraft to be used for public astronauts
– Suborbital space tourism vehicles being developed by companies like Blue Origin and Virgin Galactic
– SpaceX planning free-return trajectory around the Moon for space tourists including Yusaku Maezawa

**Future of Space Tourism:**
– Continued advancements in technology making space tourism more accessible
– Expected increase in the number of private astronauts in the coming years
– Potential for space tourism to become a significant market in commercial spaceflight
– Collaboration between space agencies and private companies to expand space tourism opportunities
– Possibility of more diverse and affordable space tourism experiences in the future

Space tourism (Wikipedia)

Space tourism is human space travel for recreational purposes. There are several different types of space tourism, including orbital, suborbital and lunar space tourism.

Soyuz MS-20 crew on the International Space Station, from left to right: Yusaku Maezawa (space tourist), Alexander Misurkin (cosmonaut), and Yozo Hirano (space tourist).

During the period from 2001 to 2009, seven space tourists made eight space flights aboard a Russian Soyuz spacecraft to the International Space Station, brokered by Space Adventures in conjunction with Roscosmos and RSC Energia. The publicized price was in the range of US$20–25 million per trip. Some space tourists have signed contracts with third parties to conduct certain research activities while in orbit. By 2007, space tourism was thought to be one of the earliest markets that would emerge for commercial spaceflight.

Russia halted orbital space tourism in 2010 due to the increase in the International Space Station crew size, using the seats for expedition crews that would previously have been sold to paying spaceflight participants. Orbital tourist flights were set to resume in 2015 but the planned flight was postponed indefinitely. Russian orbital tourism eventually resumed with the launch of Soyuz MS-20 in 2021.

On June 7, 2019, NASA announced that starting in 2020, the organization aims to start allowing private astronauts to go on the International Space Station, with the use of the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft and the Boeing Starliner spacecraft for public astronauts, which is planned to be priced at 35,000 USD per day for one astronaut, and an estimated 50 million USD for the ride there and back.

Work also continues towards developing suborbital space tourism vehicles. This is being done by aerospace companies like Blue Origin and Virgin Galactic. SpaceX announced in 2018 that they are planning on sending space tourists, including Yusaku Maezawa, on a free-return trajectory around the Moon on the Starship.

« Back to Glossary Index