The number of companies working on space tourism continues to increase. One of them, Space Perspective, recently unveiled a test version of a space capsule that will carry tourists on luxury balloon rides to the edge of space.
It seems that space tourism will not be as technological a journey as it seems, at least at the beginning. Because most of the current plans are actually aimed at gently lifting people into near space with a balloon. Space Perspective has now built a physical test model of the Neptune capsule that will carry paying passengers.
Six hour flight
With the system it has developed, Space Perspective plans to take groups of eight paid passengers (and one pilot) to an altitude of 30,480 meters. This journey is expected to take about 6 hours. At this altitude, the curvature of the Earth and the blackness of space are clearly visible.
Football stadium-sized balloon
To achieve this, passengers will board a pressurized capsule called the Spaceship Neptune, which will be suspended under a football stadium-sized SpaceBalloon filled with hydrogen. It will take two hours to gracefully ascend to the altitude, followed by two hours of promenade, followed by a two-hour descent.
The capsule is equipped with plush seats, a drinks bar, a Wi-Fi communication system capable of live broadcasting, 360-degree panoramic windows and a toilet below deck. For this unique panoramic view of Earth, it will cost $125,000 per person. Therefore, each minute of this flight is about $350.
Advanced test model
It is noted that the test model of Neptune, which has just been completed, is highly equipped and represents the spaceship that the company will fly when it becomes commercially operational. The firm will now carry out various tests, starting with uncrewed flights followed by crewed flights later next year.