Want some space?

TRAVEL • The Journal • Nov 17

 

Ever watched Gravity or Interstellar and wondered, just for a moment, what it would be like to voyage into space?

Since the dawn of the space age only 560 other humans have travelled above the Earth’s atmosphere and into space. Oh, and a dog and a chimpanzee. Even then however, only a handful got up close to the moon and these were all trained astronauts.

But this hasn’t stopped people dreaming about space as the new travel frontier. For many the idea of unencumbered weightlessness, the dead silence of space and spectacular views of the Earth from the cabin window are an irresistible attraction.

IMAGE: NASA

Now this once-impossible dream is becoming a reality as commercial space travel becomes the obsession of modern-day pioneers.

Very soon, according to the likes of Space X and Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactica, every one of us can become a rocket man, or woman.

IMAGE: UNKNOWN

Elon Musk, founder of SpaceX (as well as Paypal, the Hyperloop and Tesla) announced that two paying passengers will travel around the moon in 2018, on Space X’s Dragon spacecraft.

Another company, Space Adventures Ltd already claims to be the world’s premier private space flight company. It appears to be the only company to have sent privately paying individuals into space.

One client, Richard Garriot, who spent 12 days on the International Space Station, was clearly transformed by the experience. “Being one of the elite few who have seen Earth from the perspective of space, I have the opportunity to inspire and motivate others to achieve their dreams. I want to encourage those who know my story to not let anything get in the way of their goals and to, literally, shoot for the stars.”

If you’d like to join the ‘elite few’ and become one of the first commercial space travellers a ticket comes in at around £150million per passenger.

So what do you get for your money?

“Private spaceflight is in the phase where pioneers are needed to set an example and make history.”

 

Musk claims that Space X will “skim the surface of the moon, go quite a bit further out into deep space and then loop back to Earth, so I’m guessing, distance-wise, maybe 300,000 or 400,000 miles.”

Space Adventures add that the action begins months before the trip itself, with rigorous training alongside astronauts. Once you’re ready, you’re launched into space from Russia, first stopping at the International Space Station before you and the cosmonaut pilot take a trip around the moon. Modified rockets are used to make the trip more comfortable, though we’re not sure that stretches to pre-flight cocktails!

IMAGE: NASA

Lasting about 17 days, Space Adventures CEO Eric Anderson claims they hope to bring the spacecraft within 100 kilometers of the lunar surface.

With custom-fitted flight suits, aircraft with names like WhiteKnightTwo and SpaceShipTwo, as well as travelling faster than the speed of sound it’s the stuff of movies and, let’s face it, probably well worth the money.

In the words of a recent space tourist, “Mankind only makes progress when individuals stand up and dare to be first.”

Go on, we dare you.

Shop the article


World Class Tech Case in ‘Space Age Silver’
Available exclusively in-store at Harrods, Knightsbridge

TRAVEL • The Journal • Nov 17

 

Ever watched Gravity or Interstellar and wondered, just for a moment, what it would be like to voyage into space?

Since the dawn of the space age only 560 other humans have travelled above the Earth’s atmosphere and into space. Oh, and a dog and a chimpanzee. Even then however, only a handful got up close to the moon and these were all trained astronauts.

But this hasn’t stopped people dreaming about space as the new travel frontier. For many the idea of unencumbered weightlessness, the dead silence of space and spectacular views of the Earth from the cabin window are an irresistible attraction.

IMAGE: NASA

Now this once-impossible dream is becoming a reality as commercial space travel becomes the obsession of modern-day pioneers.

Very soon, according to the likes of Space X and Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactica, every one of us can become a rocket man, or woman.

IMAGE: UNKNOWN

Elon Musk, founder of SpaceX (as well as Paypal, the Hyperloop and Tesla) announced that two paying passengers will travel around the moon in 2018, on Space X’s Dragon spacecraft.

Another company, Space Adventures Ltd already claims to be the world’s premier private space flight company. It appears to be the only company to have sent privately paying individuals into space.

One client, Richard Garriot, who spent 12 days on the International Space Station, was clearly transformed by the experience. “Being one of the elite few who have seen Earth from the perspective of space, I have the opportunity to inspire and motivate others to achieve their dreams. I want to encourage those who know my story to not let anything get in the way of their goals and to, literally, shoot for the stars.”

If you’d like to join the ‘elite few’ and become one of the first commercial space travellers a ticket comes in at around £150million per passenger.

So what do you get for your money?

“Private spaceflight is in the phase where pioneers are needed to set an example and make history.”

 

Musk claims that Space X will “skim the surface of the moon, go quite a bit further out into deep space and then loop back to Earth, so I’m guessing, distance-wise, maybe 300,000 or 400,000 miles.”

Space Adventures add that the action begins months before the trip itself, with rigorous training alongside astronauts. Once you’re ready, you’re launched into space from Russia, first stopping at the International Space Station before you and the cosmonaut pilot take a trip around the moon. Modified rockets are used to make the trip more comfortable, though we’re not sure that stretches to pre-flight cocktails!

IMAGE: NASA

Lasting about 17 days, Space Adventures CEO Eric Anderson claims they hope to bring the spacecraft within 100 kilometers of the lunar surface.

With custom-fitted flight suits, aircraft with names like WhiteKnightTwo and SpaceShipTwo, as well as travelling faster than the speed of sound it’s the stuff of movies and, let’s face it, probably well worth the money.

In the words of a recent space tourist, “Mankind only makes progress when individuals stand up and dare to be first.”

Go on, we dare you.

Shop the article


World Class Tech Case in ‘Space Age Silver’
Available exclusively in-store at Harrods, Knightsbridge