Wednesday , December 8 2021

Why is the manned flight to Virgin Galactic Space a milestone (and how long before we can go as tourists on the ship)



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Are we closer to space tourism?


© Virgin Galactic
Are we closer to space tourism?

When in 2014, the ship that Virgin Galactic tested for commercial voyages to space crashed: the pilot died and many saw the dream of "opening space for the masses" faltering.

But this Thursday, four years after the fatal accident, the company He gave back hope.

Virgin Galactic, from Tycoon Richard Branson, managed to launch his first manned flight in space and get him back to earth without happening.

SpaceShipTwo spacecraft, which took off California, manned by two pilots, reached 82.7 km in height, above the height from which NASA grants the astronaut's status (80 km).

SpaceShipTwo achieved this height after being assembled to another plane from which it loosened to continue to rise at a speed 2.9 times faster than the sound

"It has been 14 years to come here. We had tears, tears of truth and pleasures. So today's tears were tears of joy, "Richard Branson told reporters after the success of the operation.

His statements show the importance of what has been achieved for Virgin Galactic; one milestone for this company, but also for those who try to open space tourism.

A "career" of 14 years

Branson is in a race with Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos to be the first to send space first tourists

He founded the commercial space travel company in 2004, shortly after Musk opened SpaceX (2002) and Bezos created Blue Origin (2000).

The first time Virgin promised suborbital space travel for tourists was 2008, when he assured that these would happen in a matter of "18 months".

Since then, the company has made similar promises but was accumulated delays, frustrated attempts and even a tragedy.

In 2014, the test ship crashed and one of the two people traveling in it, Michael Alsbury, died.

The incident caused the company to rethink its position and even questioned its goal, but ultimately Branson insisted on continuing.

Two years later, Virgin revealed a new ship, unit, and returned to retake the test.

Hence the trip of SpaceShipTwo is now a performance for private companies.

https://twitter.com/virgingalactic/status/1073273884831408128

But it is also a milestone for future tourists to space. to end the monopoly of state space organizations.

"Today, we have proven that Virgin Galactic can open space for the whole world," said Branson.

The big question is now: when can we go?

closer

A growing number of entrepreneurs join the competition to create one travel agent to space.

Virgin Galactic, SpaceX and Blue Origin work to get it as soon as possible.

In the case of Virgin, some of these trips can happen as early as next year, according to the agency. Reuters.

Unlike other competing companies, the Branson company has already begun selling tickets for their future trips and more than 600 people They have signed up

However, the experience is not cheap at all.

Space, for now, is expensive: up to 250,000 USD in 90 minutes.

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