I always wondered why someone didn’t modify a jet for use as a space plane, but figured that there were issues with weight, heat shielding, etc., etc., etc. Apparently they’re not as big a matter as I thought.
I love your optimism, Tuckerfan. Unfortunately, I don’t share it. I’ve been seeing this kind of stuff my whole life and my dad was seeing it before I was born. When it happens I’ll be first in line, but until then I’ll remain skeptical of anyone offering commercial space flight.
By the way, any word on what it will supposedly cost? They can’t be sending people up for the initial $5 entry.
As a WAG, I’d say that they’d have to be aiming for the same price range as VirginGalactic, roughly $200K a shot.
VirginGalactic has already collected $10 million in deposits. BTW, it turns out that the M&Ms Melville released in the cockpit were product placement, and I wouldn’t be surprised if nearly the whole operation wasn’t going to be underwritten by advertising deals for the first couple of years.
By cracking the X-Prize, Rutan & Co. have effectively repeated Lindberg’s transAtlantic flight, which lead to a boom in aviation. Already both VG and the runners up in the X-Prize have snagged not only tourists wanting to go up, but researchers wanting to send up experiments, since its longer microgravity than you can get on the Vomit Comet and it’s cheaper than a shuttle or rocket flight to orbit. Given that folks smell money, and we all know they’re willing to pour billions into the airlines even though most of them haven’t made a profit in ages, it seems certain to me that the real space age is just beginning. Remember, the hardest part of doing something is figuring out how to do it the first time, once you manage that, the rest is easy.
[Big 41-Year-Old Baby]
But I wanna go to space noooooooooooooowwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!!!