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NASA will allow private astronauts to fly to the space station * The rate is $35 per night - up to 30 days per tourist

This is as part of a project where private companies will be able to conduct experiments and even produce products at the station

Astronaut Sunita Williams runs an Israeli experiment on the International Space Station. Photo by NASA
Astronaut Sunita Williams runs an Israeli experiment on the International Space Station. NASA photo

NASA will open the International Space Station for American businesses. Among other things, it will allow two private astronauts or space tourists to stay at the station for up to 30 days, provided that the launch is carried out by a private company. The rate - 35 thousand dollars a night. The cost of such a launch is estimated at about 50 million dollars, when the space tourist will be required to meet the same requirements and go through the same training as the professional astronauts.

This move comes at a time when NASA is focusing on its important mission - to land two astronauts - a man and a woman - on the moon by 2024, a move in which American companies can also play a vital role in establishing a sustainable presence.

NASA will continue the research and experiments in low orbit according to the needs of the lunar program, while working with the private sector to test technologies, manned flight capabilities, and strengthening the developing space economy. Providing extensive opportunities on the International Space Station to manufacture, market and promote commercial products and services will help accelerate and expand the space market for many businesses.

The ultimate goal of the US space agency in low earth orbit is to partner with industry to achieve a robust ecosystem where NASA is one of many customers of procurement services and lower cost capabilities.

NASA's program addresses both the supply and demand side of a new economy, allowing the use of government resources for commercial activities, creating an opportunity to send private astronauts to the space station to identify emerging activities and markets, and quantifying NASA's long-term demand for activities in low Earth orbit.

Commercial activities aboard the space station

More than 50 companies are already conducting commercial research and development on the space station through the US National Space Station Laboratory. Their findings hold great promise. In addition, NASA worked with 11 different companies to install approximately 14 commercial facilities on the station that support research and development projects for NASA and the International Space Station.
This effort aims to expand the scope of commercial activity at the space station beyond the mandate of the national laboratory, which is limited to research and development. A new NASA regulation will allow both NASA astronauts and private astronauts commercial production and any other commercial activity on the space station. The new directive also defines prices for the use of US government resources and the space station for commercial and marketing activities.

The pricing published on Friday is specific to commercial and marketing activities made available by the new directive. It reflects the cost of the service for NASA, and is intended to encourage the emergence of new markets. As NASA learns how these new markets respond, it will be able to reassess pricing and the amount of resources available approximately every six months and make adjustments as needed.

To allow use of the space station, commercial and marketing activities must be:
• Projects that require the unique microgravity environment to develop or produce a commercial application.
• The project has a connection to a NASA mission; or
• The project will support the development of a low orbit economy.

NASA's directive that allows commercial and marketing activities aboard the space station for manufacturing, transportation, and marketing applications of commercial resources and goods, including products intended for commercial sale on Earth. NASA astronauts will be able to carry out commercial and marketing activities but will be subject to government ethics requirements.

To ensure a competitive market, NASA will release five percent of its annual allocation of crew resources (up to 90 hours) and payload capacity (up to 175 kg) but will limit the allocations to a single company.

The missions of the private astronauts
NASA will also allow private astronaut missions of up to 30 days on the International Space Station to perform tasks included in the definition of approved activities described in the announcement issued over the weekend, with the first flight of private astronauts taking place in 2020 at the earliest.

NASA will be able to allow up to two flights of private astronauts per year to the International Space Station, provided that these missions are financed in a dedicated commercial private manner. Another limitation is that the flights of private astronauts can only be carried out in a spacecraft developed under NASA's commercial crew program - meanwhile its franchises (which are still testing the technology) are SpaceX and Boeing.

The commercial mission development entity will determine the crew composition for each mission and ensure that the private astronauts meet all NASA medical standards as well as undergo the training and certification processes that International Space Station crew members go through. This is in order to reduce the risk on these flights.

Commercial targets in low earth orbit

In the long term, NASA's goal is to become one of the many customers to purchase services from the independent, commercial and residential targets in low orbit. A strong economy in low orbit will require multiple commercial destinations and NASA will collaborate with industry to locate such routes either via the International Space Station or directly to space hotels.

As a first step, NASA will add a commercial module for the entry and exit of the astronauts on the commercial flights. Until then, the airlock in the American Harmonic component of the space station will be used by the industry for a limited period of time

encourage sustainable demand

NASA continues to look for opportunities to stimulate sustainable commercial demand in low earth orbit. To that end, the agency has added a list of areas in which it is open to proposals from the private sector: space manufacturing, regenerative medicine, biological engineering and other areas that may lead to demand and revenue from low earth orbit applications. .

In addition, NASA will conduct targeted studies to better understand what the barriers to the space market are and examine ideas that will help stimulate demand.
NASA is also working to increase the research and development community's knowledge of the potential value of microgravity research and the way to conduct research in low orbit in coordination with the microgravity community to lower the barriers to entry for space experiments, as a complement to drop towers, parabolic flights, and subsonic flights. Orbitalism.

Quantify NASA's long-term demand

NASA provides a forecast of its long-term minimum of the services it intends to purchase when they become available. This is in order to reduce the uncertainty for commercial flight providers and help them make decisions about which NASA requirements they wish to fulfill.

NASA also provides details and estimated quantities for housing NASA crew members, human research, biological and physical science research, technology demonstrations, and hosting science experiments. In addition, NASA will continue to procure services for the National Space Station Laboratory for example, NASA's strategic research in the areas of space biology, physical sciences, and basic physics as recommended by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS). Basic research and applied research are not necessarily mutually exclusive, but progress in one area will often enable progress in the other. The study of life in space and the research of the physical sciences have the highest priority for long-term use in low orbit. In the life sciences, the priorities are studies of plants, model organisms, and the microbiome. In the body sciences, the priorities are studies in combustion and energy transfer.

For more than 18 years, humans have lived and worked aboard the International Space Station, conducting thousands of experiments in fields such as human research, biology, and physical sciences, as well as advanced technological development. Many of these experiments, conducted using the ISS National Laboratory, were earmarked for research and development of commercial targets. New opportunities are needed to evolve or continue beyond research and development, and the station will play a vital role in providing these opportunities for new commercial markets needed to build a sustainable ecosystem in low earth orbit.

For a message on the NASA website

2 תגובות

  1. Conan.
    You probably didn't read the article.
    NASA will not launch the guests but private launch companies.
    The guest will pay NASA 35000 per day (hotel) and a private company (SpaceX, ULA) the cost of the flight (launch)
    And in point 2, the independent non-political, non-profit body is NASA, for that it exists.
    You are actually proposing to establish a body that will perform the functions of NASA

  2. Two comments:
    1. NASA should charge a fee not according to the number of astronauts to be launched but according to the weight of the astronaut, and charge an additional fee (of course only after a successful return to Earth) for the amount of food, air and other "consumables" consumed by the astronauts during their stay in space.
    2. NASA - which is a government company and not a private one - will have tremendous power to determine the areas of research and the directions of scientific development that will take place in space! Therefore, an independent, non-political and non-profit body (or more correctly: an association) must be established that will receive requests for experiments and research proposals from private companies and scientists in every possible existing field - and then discuss and determine which experiments and companies will be flown into space - and these are the ones who will pay NASA the launch price and staying in space (NASA will only be a "taxi driver" and nothing else).

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