SpaceX and Axiom Space launch first fully-private crew mission to the ISS

Tudor Cibean

Posts: 89   +6
Staff
The big picture: Space tourism is quickly developing into a favorite pastime for the few who can afford it. While it might sound like a pipe dream right now, these early flights could pave the way to lowering costs and allow ordinary people to experience it someday.

Axiom Space, together with SpaceX, successfully launched their first private crew mission on Friday. The four astronauts launched from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida on SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket. They will arrive at the ISS tomorrow, making this the first all-private human spaceflight mission to the station.

The crew consists of Spanish-American Michael López-Alegría, former NASA astronaut and flight commander; American Larry Connor, founder of real estate investment firm Connor Group; Israeli Eytan Stibbe, former fighter pilot and founder of investment fund Vital Capital; and Canadian Mark Pathy, CEO of investment and financing company Mavrik.

The private astronauts spent hundreds of hours training for this mission, learning basic protocols like using the food galley and practicing personal hygiene in microgravity. They have also received emergency response training in case something goes wrong aboard the ISS.

The crew will be staying for eight days on the US segment of the ISS, where they will be conducting more than 25 different research experiments. They have also been invited to visit the Russian portion of the station by the three cosmonauts on board.

Afterward, they will depart on the same Crew Dragon spacecraft currently taking them to the ISS and land in the Atlantic Ocean. This whole trip cost the three private astronauts a staggering $55 million each.

Following their first flight, Axiom plans to offer similar crewed flights as often as twice per year. They are also aiming to launch modules into space that would attach to the ISS and allow private astronauts to inhabit them.

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ScottSoapbox

Posts: 327   +587
$55M is steep now, but that price will steadily fall over the next ten years by a factor of 100. Making the choice a lambo or a week in space. I know which one I would choose.
 

psycros

Posts: 4,142   +5,770
"Fully-private crew" with a former taxpayer-funded astronaut launched from a taxpayer-funded site so they can spend time on a taxpayer-funded space station.
 

Plutoisaplanet

Posts: 694   +1,089
$55M is steep now, but that price will steadily fall over the next ten years by a factor of 100. Making the choice a lambo or a week in space. I know which one I would choose.
Either option beckons the questions: how fast can you spend the money and how fast will that money take you?
 

Plutoisaplanet

Posts: 694   +1,089
"Fully-private crew" with a former taxpayer-funded astronaut launched from a taxpayer-funded site so they can spend time on a taxpayer-funded space station.
They should add docking and usage fees for private entities if they don’t already have them.
 

Sausagemeat

Posts: 1,597   +1,421
I love travelling and exploring. I’ve spent my whole life moving around, I’ve lived in 5 different countries and visited dozens more.

But I’m not sure if im that interested in doing this though. It would be great to be on the ISS but I’d probably rather go do a scuba diving boat safari in Indonesia again.
 

Kotters

Posts: 379   +278
"Fully-private crew" with a former taxpayer-funded astronaut launched from a taxpayer-funded site so they can spend time on a taxpayer-funded space station.
I mean by that logic, all private entities exist in markets and societies regulated and controlled by governments and interact with public-funded entities and elements.

I'm not sure that making "private" a useless descriptor is itself useful.
 

Raytrace3D

Posts: 338   +414
"Fully-private crew" with a former taxpayer-funded astronaut launched from a taxpayer-funded site so they can spend time on a taxpayer-funded space station.
Technically, the launch site is leased... sure, it's leased for a buck, but it's technically not tax payer funded. lol :-D
 

Sausagemeat

Posts: 1,597   +1,421
"Fully-private crew" with a former taxpayer-funded astronaut launched from a taxpayer-funded site so they can spend time on a taxpayer-funded space station.
But tax itself is 100% privately funded. The individuals going to the ISS have all probably contributed a lot more in tax than the average citizen.
 

Aaron Fox

Posts: 153   +90
The individuals going to the ISS have all probably contributed a lot more in tax than the average citizen.
Definitely. The extreme wealth they have just dropped out of the sky. It didn't accumulate because of excessively lax taxation policy on the super rich.
 

Sausagemeat

Posts: 1,597   +1,421
Ad hominem is not a rebuttal.
it wasn’t ad hominem. I was just saying imagine if someone was actually so mentally limited that they genuinely believe tax policy creates the super rich.

I merely assumed your original comment was sarcasm. You certainly didn’t make any valid points worthy of a “rebuttal”.