NASA opens up the ISS to private astronauts and tourists

Ever since human’s first voyage to space more than fifty years ago, space exploration has continued to snowball. From that moment on, over 500 people have traveled to the outer-space while many more continue to show great interest. Today, the space industry is venerable more than ever before, and we seem to know more about the deep black abyss than what lies beneath the deep ocean.

Recently, Space projects are attracting great attention, and humanity’s footprint in the outer-space continues to increase exponentially.

In a recent development, NASA has announced that it would be opening up the ISS for commercial and business purposes.  This will allow private tourists and astronoausts travel to the space station from the US soil for the first time.

NASA’s new move adds more spice to an already competitive Space industry

There’s been an increased surge in space exploration, and billionaire investors and business owners are spearheading a competitive space race. Majorly, billionaire entrepreneurs from the US, China, and other countries are at the forefront of this renewed space obsession. But now, private citizens and tourists who are able to afford the trip can embark on a space voyage right from the US soil.

NASA’s new announcement nullifies the previously existing decree that shuts tourists and private citizens out of the orbiting research laboratory. The US Space agency also seeks to attract private investors to help expand and transform the ISS into a commercial hub.

To this effect, NASA will be collaborating with Elon Musk’s SpaceX and Boeing to procure their spacecraft for the missions. SpaceX’s Dragon capsules and Boeing’s Starliner spacecraft could be taking the astronauts to the ISS as early as 2020.

Astronaut Standing Beside American Flag on the Moon

Traveling to Space will definitely cost you an arm and a leg

Specifically, NASA will permit two short private trips to the ISS each year on either SpaceX’s or Boeing’s spacecraft. NASA also specified that each mission would last for up to 30 days at roughly $35,000 per night.

The US Space agency gave an estimated flight cost of $50 million per seat. Thus, it intends to charge tourists for storage, communication, and food throughout hire stay at the ISS.

This is put in place to help generate revenue for NASA’s proposed return to the moon in 2024.

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