William Law - Apr 15, 2008

A race that is going on for some time – who will be the first company taking customers up into space on the basis of a paid trip. The race seems set to come to an end in 2010, as a Californian company has announced plans to start test trips on their Lynx craft and to start offering customers the opportunity to go up into orbit for a while. Indeed, only extremely rich customers or space fanatics should be prepared to pay something around $100.000 for the privilege of being weightless for 90 seconds. However, it is expected that, as technology improves and these trips become more commonplace, the price should drop.


It is true to say that the British billionaire Richard Branson should be the first man to offer customers such a trip as his Virgin Atlantic company plans to start testing at around the same time. However, Californian Xcor, is set to be the first company not backed by billionaire magnates to introduce ‘out-of-this-world’ trips into its itinerary. Indeed, Xcor have teamed up with the Air Force to create a team capable of realising such a scheme. Xcor have drawn up a contract with the Air Force, thought to be worth some $700.000 to $900.000. As this is not an immense amount, the potential achievements of the Californian company could be well worth remembering.


The Lynx is expected to be the size of a small aeroplane and is not thought to be something resembling a gigantic structure from a Hollywood sci-fi production. The number of seats should be limited to two, making the Lynx the perfect potential venue for wealthy honeymoon couples to enjoy something the tourism industry has so far never seen.


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