I should be getting my garbage together for a run to the landfill. I started then got sidetracked and now just don't feel like finishing the job. I can always wait until next week, right? Or maybe drop it off before work? LOL As if that'll ever happen.

Anyway, since I'm not doing my chore for the morning--in my defense I already did my bill paying and have those suckers out in my mailbox awaiting pickup--I might as well post something on here. So here goes...

Space. The final frontier? I dunno about that but it might be much more obtainable in the near future. The October issue of Popular Science has an article on commercial spaceflights and the progress that is being made towards that goal. There's a number of companies that will be offering flights into space in the 2009 - 2012 time frame. They're going to start off expensive--$200,000 per person on Virgin Atlantic, probably starting in 2009 and $275,000 per person on EADS in 2012--but those prices would soon drop due to economies of scale, investor payback, and of course increased competition.

The focus of the article is EADS (European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company), the second largest aerospace company in the world. It's planning on using around $1.3 billion over the next 5 years to develop the concept originated by Rocketplane (a company that works with NASA) into a commercially viable business plan that would be fiscally sustainable using private passengers. Was that an awkward sentence or what? I really should spend some time editing my writing.

The article also lists some competitors which gives hope for price reductions. Armadillo, Bigelow, Rocketplane, Blue Origin and of course Virgin Galactic are all mentioned by name and a few others are hinted at.

I would love to take a trip out beyond the atmosphere but I certainly can't afford $200k. Or even a sizable fraction of that amount. Hardly matters since the flights aren't available yet. Maybe in 9 years when I turn 55 that could be a present for myself. By then the flights would have been running for 5 years or so and the prices might be more reasonable. Would you want to take a trip out to space if it was affordable--say $25,000 or less?


No_Newz said…
I guess I am just a bore. I don't get it at all. Where are they going? Once they get there, what are they going to do? It's not like there is a resort on Pluto. Oh yeah, there isn't even a Pluto anymore either. :P

Have a great weekend!
GA Girl said…
If I had the spare cash (unlikely) I'd love to do it. Both my mother and I wanted to go up on the space shuttle, so guess it's genetic. Also would love to go on one of those deep-ocean vessels.
Into the Light said…
No, I wouldn't! Are you nuts?!?!?!?

I don't think I'd even consider leaving the planet unless there was some reason that it must be vacated. Just the thought sends me into a panic. Not that I was invited, but you've got 9 years to change my mind, I suppose. ;-)
kenju said…
If there was an actual colony on the moon or a planet, I might do it. But at heart, I am a hot-air-balloon kind of gal.
utenzi said…
Judy, I had a girlfriend back in my Emory days that loved the idea of being up in a hot air balloon. I never went up with her--I don't know if she ever realized that dream.

Tazz, Earth is a bit tame. Go out and see the stars!

GaGrl, I'm too claustrophobic for one of those deep ocean vehicles but I do like the idea of a space shuttle of some sort.

Lois, too bad about Pluto. Just too small to count.

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