Space tourism co-op
by Sam Dinkin
|SpaceShipOne’s historic next two or three flights will be a great time to pass HR 3752, announce a new low-carb lunar exploration plan, and just bask in the glory of private industry.|
How does the wit of brewing and the wit of car co-ops apply to suborbital tourism? Well, my bet is that there are plenty of people who would happily pay a discount price for a ticket to space. Suppose there are 1,000 people willing to pay $20,000 for a ticket to space. That’s $20 million. I bet there are at least a couple of firms willing to finance development of a one-passenger suborbital spaceship and make a few of them that are able to fly once a day for $20 million. Once the design and testing are complete after a year or so, then there could be a lottery to see which day, which of the investors got to fly. All the co-op members would have their turn after a year and they would also own shares in the spacecraft.
Does anyone have the wit to try this?
A few things to watch for in the next few weeks: if time runs out on SpaceX’s objection to NASA’s funding Kistler’s contract, maybe Elon Musk will just buy Kistler. It may be worth more to him than to its existing investors because he can make a bigger profit from the NASA flight data contract (five orbital flights for $227 million) than Kistler can.
Look for President Bush and Congress to ride Burt Rutan and Paul Allen’s coattails this month as history is made in the Mojave Desert. SpaceShipOne’s historic next two or three flights will be a great time to pass HR 3752, announce a new low-carb lunar exploration plan on the heels of the Congressional Budget Office estimate, and just bask in the glory of private industry.
Look for AST to get into the act by granting Mojave Airport a launch license in time for one of the big launches too. They have the dramatic timing, and the hundreds of thousands of people in Mojave at the Woodstock of Space (the day space got its mojo back?) will be irresistible to grant the license even though Burt does not technically need it because he is air launching.