If you’re trying to avoid airborne viruses, heading to a near vacuum might not be the worst idea.
A Florida company is planning to fly passengers to the edge of space in a high-tech version of a hot air balloon, with a pilot and up to eight travelers riding in a pressurized capsule suspended from an enormous blimp.
Human space flight company Space Perspective has scheduled the test flight of its Spaceship Neptune for early 2021, from the auspicious surroundings of the Shuttle Landing Facility at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
That test flight will be uncrewed and carrying research payloads, but Space Perspective hopes that in a few years it’ll also be taking space tourists on six-hour sightseeing jaunts, with a refreshment bar and social media capabilities to hand.
As well as Kennedy Space Center, Space Perspective intends to launch from Florida’s Cecil Spaceport and is planning additional launch sites around the world, including at Kodiak in Alaska. It’s already possible to reserve seats on Space Perspective’s website and Anchorage Daily News reports that passengers can expect to pay around $125,000 for a ticket.
The six-hour trips will involve a two-hour gentle ascent above 99% of the Earth’s atmosphere to 100,000 feet — an experience, Space Perspective says, only enjoyed so far by 20 people in human history.
There’ll be another leisurely two hours for passengers to enjoy the 360-degree views from the cabin before the spaceship makes its two-hour descent to the ocean, where it will splash down safely. Voyage to shore will be completed by ship.
If you’d like to read the original story from CNN, you can click here!