Posted by firstname.lastname@example.org on September 29, 2011 at 2:05 PM
Profiles of Space Expedition Curaçao and Armadillo Aerospace join A Holiday in Space today.
A week ago, I hadn't even heard of Space Expedition Curaçao (I've known about the Lynx spaceplane for a while), and the arrival of a third space travel agency makes space tourism look like a genuine industry. And to be honest, if I could afford the ticket price, I'd probably be tempted to fly from the Dutch Antilles than windswept Baikonur or the Mojave desert.
At $95,000, I might be able to afford a ticket if I can just convince my other half that we don't need a house.
Armadillo is hoping to cut the cost of spaceflight to around $100,000, although I think single-stage, vertical takeoff and landing is still a very ambitious goal for any spacecraft. They're a focussed and experienced team who are steadily notching up milestones, and Space Adventures wouldn't have signed them up if they didn't have what it takes.
Whenever they fly, the as-yet-unnamed Armadillo craft will be one of the strangest looking sub-orbital vehicles if it looks anything like their demonstrators.
Look out for a profile of XCOR Aerospace's Lynx when I get to the "X" section of the spacecraft profiles in a few weeks.