Saturday, October 17, 2009

Building the Private Space Ships of the Future!

It's been a while since I've posted anything space related... I've been reading up on all things private space sector and there are a few folks I'm keeping my eye on:

Virgin Galactic, SpaceX, Bigelow Aerospace, Armadillo Aerospace, Ad Astra Rocket Company, and Blue Origin (This last one is pretty mysterious and not much is known about their progress.)

I completely believe that these private aerospace companies are what's really going to get humanity into space in a big way in the next couple of decades. I admit most of these companies are in their infancy, but they're developing relatively quickly and cutting deals with NASA and finding funding... I have no doubt that most if not all will grow into major players in space. We're in the space version of the late 70s just before the big Internet boom of the early 90s. Trust me, once these guys take off (or blast off) they're going to play off each other and compete and it's going to snowball.

It's not a huge stretch of the imagination to envision a near future with ships routinely flying around the solar system made up of standardized components developed by these different companies. The ship could have a version of SpaceX's Dragon command module as the bridge, Bigelow's BA 330 habitats for crew and cargo, Ad Astra's powerful VASIMR ion drives propelling them to distant targets, and once there dropping down with Armadillo landers!

I, for one, am looking forward to my retirement cruise to Mars on one of these ships.

No comments: