Space balloon company unveils luxury cabin for tourists

start perspective from space possesses published the first illustrations of the luxury cabin in which he plans to transport tourists above the Earth, under the gentle power of a massive space balloon.

It’s already received deposits for hundreds of Space Edge tickets, and the company expects its first launches to begin in 2024.

Space tourism: Governments and the military have long been the only groups that could afford to send people into space. But recently, reusable rockets and other innovations have reduced launch costs, ushering in the new era of space tourism.

Billionaire Jeff Bezos’ space company Blue Origin has sent several tour groups into space in a rocket, including Star Trek’s William Shatner, and while billionaire Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic has yet to transport any paying customers in its space shuttle, its crew completed two spaceflights.

“You will have two hours to see the curve of the Earth, the total darkness of space and the thin blue line of our atmosphere.”

perspective from space

Next Level Hot Air Balloon Rides: Space Perspective hopes to be one of the next companies to enter the space tourism industry by using a huge space balloon to lift a pressurized cabin, called Neptune, to an altitude of around 100,000 feet.

It’s not technically space – the Karman line separating Earth’s atmosphere from space is about 330,000 feet – but it’s high enough for passengers inside the capsule to enjoy views of Earth’s horizon and the darkness of the space.

“Neptune’s rise peaks above 99% of Earth’s atmosphere at the edge of space,” according to perspective from space. “You will have two hours to see the curve of the Earth, the total darkness of space and the thin blue line of our atmosphere.”

Passengers will not experience weightlessness during flight, as the steady motion of the balloon means it is never in free fall.

After about two hours at its maximum altitude, the space balloon will slowly descend, landing in the ocean about six hours after liftoff.

The proposed exterior of a Space Perspective cabin. Credit: Space Perspective

What’s new? In June 2021, Space Perspective performed its first test flight, using a space balloon to carry a full-size (but no full weight) capsule 108,000 feet above Earth. He has now shared artwork of the interior of his future passenger capsule, which he calls the “Space Lounge”.

The living room includes Wi-Fi, reclining seats, customizable lighting, and 360-degree views (even the restrooms have large windows). There’s plenty of space to walk around, take photos and even eat a meal – Space Perspective says food and drink service will be available on board.

The cabin offers a 360 degree view of the Earth. Credit: Space Perspective

space balloon

Food and beverage services will be available. Credit: Space Perspective

The bottom line: At $125,000 a ticket, Space Perspective does not offer cheap spatial experience. But a Virgin Galactic ticket costs $450,000 (and Blue Origin will not share its ticket fees), so it’s cheaperthanks to the lack of rockets and fuel – potentially making a visit above Earth affordable for more people.

Space Perspective says it has taken deposits for 600 tickets so far and plans to begin commercial flights in late 2024. It is now taking reservations for 2,025 flights, which are available with a $1,000 refundable deposit. .

A single test flight and plans for a fancy cabin won’t be enough to get tourists into space, however – the startup will need to perform more tests with full-weight prototypes of its capsule before paying passengers board aboard his space balloon.

space balloon

The interior of the cabin can accommodate eight people. Credit: Space Perspective

space balloon

Passengers will be able to see approximately 450 miles. Credit: Space Perspective

We would love to hear from you! If you have a comment about this article or have a tip for a future Freethink story, please email us at tips@freethink.com.