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Commercial space travel and tourism has great potential for viability and success. When Space Adventures did a survey from respondents to see how much people would be willing to pay for a trip to outer space they found out people would be willing to pay up to thirty percent of their annual gross income (Ellis, 2013). Another survey found people were willing to pay between fifteen and twenty thousand dollars for a space trip (Ellis, 2013). Private companies are racing to come up with new technology and ways to make space travel less expensive so average people can go to space. As this new industry takes off, prices will come down making it possible for more people to take part in space travel (Commercial Space Travel: The final Frontier, 2012). Companies like Virgin Galactic are offering space flights (Commercial Space Travel: The final Frontier, 2012). Other companies like Space Island Group plans to make living in space a reality for businesses (Commercial Space Travel: The final Frontier, 2012). Space Island is working to use solar energy to power their infrastructure for twenty thousand people by 2020 (Commercial Space Travel: The final Frontier, 2012). Commercial space travel and tourism will take several years and will be very expensive. It will be very challenging and will require a lot of new technology. This will be good for humanity and world economic growth as long as we can work together and keep it safe for humans and our environment. Ellis, L. (2013). What it Costs For a Trip Into Space. Retrieved April 25, 2013, from What It Costs Everything Costs Something: travel.whatitcosts.com Commercial Space Travel: The final Frontier. (2012, August 12). Retrieved April 25, 2013, from Commercial Space Travel News: commercialspacetravel.org

Contributed by Michele Anderson

Prices associated with commercial space travel and tourism have been very high so far. Only a handful of very rich people in the private sector have been to outer space. Several hundred people have now been up to eight hundred thousand feet which is at the edge of Earth’s atmosphere (Ellis, 2013). When people get to that height they are able to see the Earth’s curve, and they can see where the “darkness of space” starts (Ellis, 2013). Private companies are racing to start space flights and build hotels and resorts in outer space to grow commercial travel and tourism (Ellis, 2013). A company called Space Adventures is a space travel agency that makes space flight arrangements (Ellis, 2013). The company has also created some neat opportunities for people to start to experience space such as taking private tourists to “the outer limits”, offering zero-gravity flights, and creating “high-altitude experiences” for thrill seekers (Ellis, 2013). The cost is around twelve thousand dollars for this trip (Ellis, 2013). A trip in a cargo plane that can simulate weightlessness costs around five thousand dollars (Ellis, 2013). They even offer a suborbital flight to customers allowing them to have a weightless experience sixty two miles up (Ellis, 2013). Other companies like Virgin Galactic and EADS also plan to start offering customers suborbital flights (Ellis, 2013). These companies are offering necessary training and flights to customers for a price of one hundred to two hundred thousand dollars (Ellis, 2013). Companies are also offering six month cosmonaut training and survival classes to prepare customers to travel to the International Space Station (Ellis, 2013). Space Adventures is offering this opportunity (Ellis, 2013). The price is between twenty and thirty million dollars and the customer will get to stay at the International Space Station for one or two weeks (Ellis, 2013). Space Adventures is also planning a trip for the elite in the private sector to go to the Moon (Ellis, 2013). This is not available yet but they are planning the details (Ellis, 2013). The price for this trip is estimated between one hundred and two hundred million dollars (Ellis, 2013) Ellis, L. (2013). What it Costs For a Trip Into Space. Retrieved April 25, 2013, from What It Costs Everything Costs Something: travel.whatitcosts.com

Contributed by Michele Anderson

Private companies in the commercial space travel and tourism industry are offering promotions to attract customers and promote the industry. One company that is offering a promotion to expand the space industry is Google. On July 21, 2011, The New York Times published an article about how Google is offering thirty million dollars to teams in the private sector to land on the Moon (Chang, 2011). Twenty million dollars will be awarded to the first team who can land on the Moon, they must explore five hundred meters, and then they have to send back videos to Earth in high definition along with pictures (Chang, 2011). A second team to accomplish the feat will win five million dollars (Chang, 2011). The other five million dollars will be awarded as bonus prizes for accomplishing feats such as traveling over five thousand meters on the surface of the Moon and surviving “a frigid lunar night” (Chang, 2011). Twenty nine teams took on the challenge by Google (Chang, 2011). The deadline is December 2015, and The New York Times reports they do not think the majority of the teams will be able to overcome the technical and financial challenges involved in landing on the Moon (Chang, 2011). Two promising teams entered into the contest are Moon Express and Astrobiotic Technology (Chang, 2011). One of the teams called Moon Express has decided to make it their mission to be the first delivery company for the Moon calling themselves the future “Federal Express for Moon deliveries” (Chang, 2011). The company bought a lunar lander from NASA, and it plans to start mining on the Moon (Chang, 2011). The team has a budget of seventy to one hundred million dollars to complete the project (Chang, 2011). They are expecting to be able to sell videos of their Moon broadcasts and are advertising to corporations they will put their logo on the lander in return for sponsorships (Chang, 2011). They are also trying to get the popular television show American Idol involved by asking them to have a contest to see who sounds the best when they play a recording of contestants on the Moon (Chang, 2011). Another team called Astrobiotic Technology wants to sell space on their lunar lander to science and space institutions who would like to send experiments to the Moon (Chang, 2011). They are charging eight hundred twenty thousand dollars a pound for shipments (Chang, 2011). Their lander will have the ability to carry two hundred forty pounds of freight (Chang, 2011). That will give them a huge profit for landing on the Moon even if they are not the winners of the contest (Chang, 2011). China, Russia, and India are also working on government projects to send landers to the Moon in the next few years in response to the Google challenge (Chang, 2011). NASA has since awarded Astrobiotic Technology, Moon Express and another private company called Rocket City Space Pioneers five hundred thousand dollars each to compete (Chang, 2011). NASA plans to award installments of up to thirty million dollars to competitors between now and 2015 (Chang, 2011). The manager of the NASA Innovative Lunar Demonstrations Data program, George Xenofos, has been evaluating the technological abilities of the teams and says technical issues will not stop these teams from landing on the Moon (Chang, 2011). One of the interesting worries that may come to mind as countries land on the Moon would be legal issues surrounding countries claiming sovereignty over parts of the Moon where they land (Chang, 2011). This is not a valid concern however (Chang, 2011). In 1967 one hundred nations including the U. S. signed The Outer Space Treaty which prevents any country from making sovereign claims over parts of the Moon (Chang, 2011). They plan to use similar “legal parameters” when mining on the Moon like fishing in international oceans (Chang, 2011). All of the teams feel the market for mining on the Moon has great potential (Chang, 2011). They plan to bring back big payloads of rare minerals such as platinum (Chang, 2011). Chang, K. (2011, July 21). Race to the Moon Heats Up for Private Firms. Retrieved April 25, 2013, from The New York Times: www.nytimes.com&

Contributed by Michele Anderson

There is a great need for continued economic growth, and the commercial space travel and tourism industry could be a great help to global economic growth. This is an “environmental factor” that can help the commercial space travel and tourism industry. Even though people around the world have a higher standard of living than ever in history, a large portion of the population still lives in deep poverty (Collins, Meeting the Needs of the New Millennium: Passenger Space Travel and World Economic Growth, 2002). Patrick Collins, writer of a paper published on the SPACE FUTURE website, wrote, “World economic growth also requires international flexibility and agreement on rules of ‘fair play’. For humanitarian reasons, as well as from the wish to reduce friction between richer and poorer countries, we must hope that poorer countries’ economic development continues successfully. But, as an inescapable corollary, to the extent that these countries’ participation in the world economy grows through the 21st century, proportionately greater innovation of new industries will be required in the currently more advanced countries. If this is insufficient, unemployment will increase very substantially, and/or average incomes will fall proportionately because of inexorable competition from countries with lower incomes.” (Collins, Meeting the Needs of the New Millennium: Passenger Space Travel and World Economic Growth, 2002). Patrick Collins went on to explain how Japan has had its’ highest unemployment in 50 years, there is negative economic growth around the globe, and there is deflation. There continues to be unemployment in the double digits in many countries in South America, Europe, Southeast Asia, and Russia (Collins, Iwasaki, & Kanayama, Commercial Implications of Market Research on Space Tourism, 1994). There are some “environmental factors” hindering commercial space travel and tourism. NASA and the European Space Agency have tried to prevent commercial passengers from traveling to the International Space Station (Collins, Meeting the Needs of the New Millennium: Passenger Space Travel and World Economic Growth, 2002). Space agencies like the British National Space Centre are not required to focus any research or do any activities with potential commercial use, and they display negative behaviors toward commercial space efforts (Collins, Meeting the Needs of the New Millennium: Passenger Space Travel and World Economic Growth, 2002). Their reasons for trying to suppress commercial space travel and tourism include their own interests in economic preservation for their organizations, and they do not want to give over some of their operations to the private sector (Collins, Meeting the Needs of the New Millennium: Passenger Space Travel and World Economic Growth, 2002). Other “environmental factors” helping and hindering space travel and tourism would include technological advances and safety factors. We need to develop much more technology and safety features to make the space industry viable. This is helpful to the space industry because it will challenge the world to rise to the occasion to create new industries. The drawback is that it will be costly and take time. House lawmakers in the United States have tasked the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) with understanding and addressing the risks of private spaceflight missions and space tourism in light of the potentially growing commercial space industry (SPACE.com, 2012). According to SPACE.com the FAA understands the public need to clearly understand risks involved in the space industry but report they plan to effectively manage it by not imposing safety regulations until 2015 so they can work with industry developers (SPACE.com, 2012). Collins, P. (2002, August). Meeting the Needs of the New Millennium: Passenger Space Travel and World Economic Growth. Retrieved April 24, 2013, from SPACE FUTURE: www.spacefuture.com Collins, P., Iwasaki, Y., & Kanayama, H. &. (1994, May 15-24). Commercial Implications of Market Research on Space Tourism. Retrieved April 24, 2013, from SPACE FUTURE: www.spacefuture.com SPACE.com. (2012, March 21). Space Tourism and Private Space Travel Must Be Safe, House Panel Says. Retrieved April 24, 2013, from SPACE.com: www.space.com

Contributed by Michele Anderson

Companies are using target marketing for commercial space travel and tourism. Target marketing is used by companies to identify their customer’s wants and needs and then they focus their marketing efforts on customers who have a want or need for the product they are offering. Companies have to be careful with target marketing because they have to be ethical and they must also be careful of how their customers will view their marketing efforts. When companies are targeting a segment such as African Americans for example, they may suggest with their marketing that their product will make customers glamorous or in high fashion. This target marketing then becomes part of the company brand. Companies must take this into account to be sure they are creating a brand they will be proud of in the future. The authors of the class text discuss market planning and explain there are four things that must be explored when companies select a target market (Peter & Donnelly, 2006, pp. 16-17). They say the four most important things to consider include what customers need or want, what the company must do to satisfy a customer’s needs and wants, market size, and the profile for growth (Peter & Donnelly, 2006, pp. 16-17). They go on to point out companies have to be sure the market they are targeting is big enough to create enough of a profit to benefit of the company (Peter & Donnelly, 2006, pp. 72-73). Other things the text authors suggest companies look at when target marketing includes markets with heavy users (Peter & Donnelly, 2006, pp. 72-73). They say markets with heavy users may only have that one relevant target, and if that brand is the only one in the market then targeting to a segment would not be profitable (Peter & Donnelly, 2006, pp. 72-73). They go on to point out that when companies target one segment or multiple segments they must make their decisions based on whether their targets are measurable, meaningful, and marketable (Peter & Donnelly, 2006, p. 73). This means companies must be able to measure the characteristics and size of the markets, the targets must be big enough to create profitable sales and growth for longevity, and the companies have to be able to serve and reach the targets efficiently (Peter & Donnelly, 2006, p. 72). Companies in the commercial space travel and tourism industry are interested in target marketing to thrill seekers who want to go to space, scientists who may have a cost benefit of doing experiments in zero gravity, very rich people interested in the prestige of being one of the first space tourists, business people who would have a great advantage if they could get to places across the world in a very short time to do business, and the military who would be interested in traveling great distances in a short time. According to Japanese researchers of space travel tourism there is a growing market of individuals who would be interested in making short visits to low Earth orbit (Collins, Iwasaki, & Kanayama, Commercial Implications of Market Research on Space Tourism, 1994). They predict once the short space trips into orbit start to grow in popularity that the commercial space travel and tourism industry will grow (Collins, Iwasaki, & Kanayama, Commercial Implications of Market Research on Space Tourism, 1994). They think it will continue to grow into orbital vehicles with a few “hostel accommodation units”, and then on to vehicles becoming large hotels offering all kinds of space tourism entertainments (Collins, Iwasaki, & Kanayama, Commercial Implications of Market Research on Space Tourism, 1994). Collins, P., Iwasaki, Y., & Kanayama, H. &. (1994, May 15-24). Commercial Implications of Market Research on Space Tourism. Retrieved April 24, 2013, from SPACE FUTURE: www.spacefuture.com Peter, P. J., & Donnelly, J. H. (2006). A Preface to Marketing Management. New York, Ny: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

Contributed by Michele Anderson

The space travel and tourism industry got a slow start but it is gaining momentum according to Mike Wall, Senior Writer for SPACE.com (Wall, 2011). For example Richard Branson, owner of Virgin Galactic, started his company in 2004, and thought he would be flying customers in space by 2007 (Wall, 2011). Mike Wall reports George Nield, the associate administrator for commercial space transportation at the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), says, “I’m seeing the likelihood that several of these companies are going to be at the point where they’re testing their vehicle in the next couple of years, and certainly within the next five years, I expect to see regular and frequent operations” (Wall, 2011). The first space tourism customer, Dennis Tito, paid twenty million dollars in 2001 to go on an orbital trip to the International Space Station (Wall, 2011). He made a deal with Russia’s space agency which was brokered by the U.S. company Space Adventures to make the trip, and the space travel industry was born (Wall, 2011). Since then another six millionaires have paid up to thirty five million dollars to travel to the International Space Station (Wall, 2011). Companies like Virgin Galactic are targeting customers looking for the thrill of space travel and scientists who would like to do experiments in the weightlessness of space (Wall, 2011). They are trying to offer space flights for a much more reasonable price. Also, the company decided to make major changes to their spacecraft when developing SpaceShip Two after asking customers what they wanted from commercial space travel and tourism (Wall, 2011). They decided to add more windows for six commercial paying passengers and also to add room for passengers to float around in the cabin (Wall, 2011). A picture of Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShip Two is below (Wall, 2011). George Whitesides, the CEO of Virgin Galactic, says, “We designed a vehicle that we think meets the sweet spot for customers. But creating that vehicle was more than just tweaking SpaceShipOne. It really was creating a new vehicle” (Wall, 2011). George Whitesides goes on to explain that Virgin Galactic had to also create a manufacturing program, set up a space port, and map out details for the spaceflight experience for customers (Wall, 2011). George Whitesides says Virgin Galactic aspires to be the first commercial “space line” for the world (Wall, 2011). Customers for Virgin Galactic are excited (Wall, 2011). The company already has 450 customers who have placed deposits with them to fly into space (Wall, 2011). These customers realize they are the first commercial space travelers and look at this opportunity as a chance to change history (Wall, 2011). Wall, M. (2011, October 18). SPACE.com. Retrieved April 22, 2013, from Despite Slow Start, Space Tourism Biz Begins to Fire Up: www.space.com

Contributed by Michele Anderson

There are several private companies interested in growing the commercial spaceflight travel and tourism industry. Space Exploration Technologies also known as SpaceX has a couple of space ships called Dragon and Falcon 9 it would like to use for space station travel (Fox, 2010). It is located in Hawthorne, California and was started in 2002 (Fox, 2010). It is backed by one hundred million dollars of the Musk personal fortune (Fox, 2010). It also has another twenty million dollars from other investors (Fox, 2010). SpaceX has a contract for one point six billion dollars to provide NASA with twelve cargo deliveries to the International Space Station until 2016 (Fox, 2010). Orbital Sciences is another private company involved with commercial space travel and tourism (Fox, 2010). It is a publicly traded company with one point one billion dollars in revenue (Fox, 2010). It is located in Dulles, Virginia and was started in 1982 (Fox, 2010). It has two a spaceships named Cygnus and Taurus 2 (Fox, 2010). It has a one point nine billion dollar contract with NASA also to provide them eight unmanned cargo deliveries to the International Space Station (Fox, 2010). Blue Origin is also another company involved in the new industry (Fox, 2010). It is owned by the founder of Amazon.com, Jeff Bezos who has invested his personal fortune in the company (Fox, 2010). It is located in Kent, Washington and was started in 2004 (Fox, 2010). Blue Origin has one space ship called New Shepard (Fox, 2010). NASA has given Blue Origin three point seven million dollars to create an astronaut escape system and to build a capsule prototype for a commercial crew (Fox, 2010). Bigelow Aerospace is another company involved in the commercial space industry (Fox, 2010). It was started by Robert Bigelow who has invested one hundred eighty million dollars of his personal funds (Fox, 2010). He is the owner of Budget Suites of America (Fox, 2010). The company was started in 1999 and is located in Las Vegas, Nevada (Fox, 2010). The company has two spaceships, Sundancer and BA-330 (Fox, 2010). The company is the leader in inflatable spacecraft and mini-space station prototypes (Fox, 2010). Their space vehicles will be space stations (Fox, 2010). Robert Bigelow wants to create a private Moon base with his company’s inflatables, and they are working with Boeing to create crew capsules for their space stations (Fox, 2010). Boeing has been receiving millions in grant money from NASA to develop spacecraft as well (Fox, 2010). Another company involved in the commercial space industry is SpaceDev/Sierra Nevada Corp (Fox, 2010). It was started by Jim Benson and is now led by Faith Ozmen (Fox, 2010). It was started in 1997 in Poway, California (Fox, 2010). It has a spaceship named Dream Chaser (Fox, 2010). The company has won millions in grant money from NASA to develop Dream Chaser (Fox, 2010). Dream Chaser is a space plane used to launch a crew and cargo into space (Fox, 2010). Finally there is also another company in the commercial space industry called Virgin Galactic (Fox, 2010). It is owned by a British Billionaire, Sir Richard Branson (Fox, 2010). It is located in London, England and has a Spaceport in New Mexico (Fox, 2010). The business was started in 2004 (Fox, 2010). It has several spaceships including SpaceShip Two (Fox, 2010). This company is interested in offering commercial space travel to private citizens (Fox, 2010). FoxNews.com. (2010, January 29). Obama to End NASA Constellation Program. Retrieved April 22, 2013, from FoxNews.com Fair & Balanced: www.foxnews.com

Contributed by Michele Anderson

On January 29, 2010, Fox News reported the biggest full Moon of the year, and then they also ironically had to report President Obama planned to end NASA’s Moon missions (FoxNews.com, 2010). Many of the space shuttles are aged, and NASA had been sending the Ares rocket to the Moon as a part of their Constellation program (FoxNews.com, 2010). This was sad news to the NASA astronauts who wanted to go to the Moon (FoxNews.com, 2010). All funding for the lunar landers, Moon bases and the entire Constellation program had been cut because according to FoxNews.com the Obama Administration had other plans for NASA (FoxNews.com, 2010). The Obama Administration cut out the budget for NASA’s Constellation program’s manned Moon missions, but it did not completely cut spending on the International Space Station (FoxNews.com, 2010). NASA will still receive almost six billion dollars between 2010 and 2015, partly to extend the International Space Station’s life until at least 2020 (FoxNews.com, 2010). Part of that money is also to be used to help private companies build spacecraft to carry people to the International Space Station as NASA retires old shuttles (FoxNews.com, 2010). The Obama Administration also wants NASA to develop research and new technology to help humans explore asteroids in our solar system (FoxNews.com, 2010). The Obama Administration wants private companies to make rockets and capsules that can be used as “space taxis” (FoxNews.com, 2010). The idea here is that these companies could create fixed-price contracts to “taxi” astronauts from Earth to the International Space Station (FoxNews.com, 2010). This opened up the possibility for an exciting new industry for commercial space travel and tourism in the United States. This is really important for our nation and exciting because so many new technologies will have to be developed. Since we have a down economy this could help stimulate economic growth in our country, and it could also help the United States to remain a world leader in the technology sector. Historically, the super powers of the world have been the technology leaders. Rome started as a world super power by leading the way with developing technology for building roads and cities. Commercial space travel and tourism will help stimulate new business growth and more jobs as the new industry is developed. Another exciting possibility is space travel for the private sector. This will create opportunities for private citizens to travel to space. Fox, S. (2010, June 4). 6 Private Companies That Could Launch Humans Into Space. Retrieved April 22, 2013, from Space.com: www.space.com

Contributed by Michele Anderson

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