Thursday, September 28, 2006

Have Spaceship, Will Travel

In Have Spacesuit, Will Travel the hero, Kip Russell, dreams of going to space. PanAm announces tourist trips to the moon and in a desperate bid to go Kip enters a contest, the grand prize of which is a trip to the moon. Fast forward from 1958, the year Spacesuit was published, to 2006 and zillionaire nutjob, Sir Richard Branson:
Sir Richard Branson has unveiled a mock-up of the rocket-powered vehicle that will carry clients into space through his Virgin Galactic business.

The Virgin "spaceships" are designed to carry six passengers and two pilots to an altitude of about 140km on a sub-orbital space flight.

Tickets on a Virgin Galactic flight are expected to cost £100,000 ($190,000).

The mock-up of the spacecraft was unveiled at the Javits exhibition centre in New York on Thursday.

The Virgin craft are based on the design of SpaceShipOne, built by aviation pioneer Burt Rutan, which became the first privately built vehicle to reach space in 2004.

If I had a spare 200 grand I know what I'd do. Since I don't I may be looking at other options:
Virgin Group has contracted Rutan's company Scaled Composites to design and build the passenger spaceship and its mothership. Virgin Galactic will own and operate at least five spaceships and two motherships.

The passenger flights, which could begin in 2009, will take off from a $225m (£127m) facility called Spaceport America in the New Mexico desert.

Will Whitehorn, president of Virgin Galactic, said the firm was in negotiations over a reality TV show.

In the show, contestants would compete to win a place on a space flight, the Press Association reported.

Mr Whitehorn said: "The indications are that we can create a show that would give people the chance to go into space. It would be a cross between Dr Who, Star Trek and the Krypton Factor."

Virgin Galactic is one of several private firms vying to open up public access to space.

1 comment:

WhidbeyIslander said...

I noticed that the first guy to secure a seat on Spaceship Two is somebody who traded in two million frequent flyer miles on Virgin Atlantic to get the seat.

Two million miles.