We are just months away from the arrival of a historic revolution in spaceflight. Thanks to Virgin Galactic and Blue Origin, space travel will become available to ordinary people who are hungry for an unearthly experience.
The VSS Unity spacecraft from the company of Richard Branson, head of the Virgin Group, has just arrived at the famous Spaceport America in New Mexico, from where the first and regular tourist flights to the space frontier are to take place. Engineers are there in the coming weeks to test the machine itself and VMS Eve, as well as the operation of the entire spaceport.
The facility is already ready to receive space tourists. A few months ago, we could see on films how beautifully and luxuriously the interior of the port was decorated. There is a hotel part and a hall and bar where customers can prepare for the flight and relax after it.
The company will eventually use as many as three machines. Two of them are already available for testing, while the third is under construction. Virgin Galactic is also already holding regular training sessions for all those who have bought tickets and are determined to fly. Richard Branson also recently unveiled costumes for space tourists, footwear and jackets. These have been designed and sewn together with experts from the famous Under Armor company.
Each suit will be individually tailored and will feature the flag of the tourist’s country of origin as well as their name. The garments were designed among the world’s top experts, including: astronauts, pilots, doctors, extreme sports fans and, of course, stylists and fashion designers. The suits contain Rush technology, which will stimulate the muscles and thus recover faster. Meanwhile, soft padding and special fabrics will help ensure thermal comfort.
Virgin Galactic wants to initiate flights to the space frontier every 30 hours or so. This is necessary because there is so much interest in this type of travel. Richard Branson revealed that there are almost 3300 people interested in flying at the moment. It is important to note here that these are people who are 100 percent mentally and physically prepared for the flight, and have bought tickets at $250,000 each. The number of customers is growing every day.
Although the price of the ticket may scare many, it is almost certain that it will come down with time. This is to be due to stiff competition in the form of Blue Origin and its New Shepard rocket and Crew Capsule 2.0. Price drops will also accelerate development and revive interest in the space industry.
Interestingly, Boeing has recently invested in the Virgin Galactic project through its HorizonX Ventures fund. However, the American company has somewhat bigger plans for the cooperation with Richard Branson. Well, in the following years it will invest in projects related to supersonic travel around the planet. The boss of Virgin group is building a successor of the famous Concorde. The machine will appear in the sky in 3 years and will shorten the travel between the world’s metropolises by over 3 hours.