US and Russia in new space race for first commercial space station to go up by 2015
Now I thought the space race was over and done with but it seems like the super powers are still in the heat of battle as to who has the better ‘space mobile’ or in this case ‘space station’. This time ‘contestants’ are fighting over who will have the first commercial space station up and running. We have Russia’s Orbital Technologies and RSC Energia that are planning on launching launch the first commercial space station by 2015 or 2016. And then there’s the US entry by Las Vegas-based Bigelow Aerospace. The US entry has plans to have a private space station ready for customers by 2015 as well.
Russia’s station will fly in orbit approximately 62 miles from the International Space Station just in case you want to get out and see what that’s like. Their Soyuz spacecraft is going to be the commuter vehicle that will be shuttling crews back and forth. The commercial hub for tourists who wish to get a little ‘spaced’ out’ is expected to have a design life of 15 years. Bigelow’s design includes inflatable space station modules that will also be targeting the tourist, scientists, and corporations. The company’s Astro-staff will be certified astronauts and will be taking care of all your spacy needs while you’re up there.