Axiom Space has signed contracts with the first three space tourists to fly to the International Space Station on SpaceX’s Crew Dragon Spacecraft. Axiom Space is a company founded in 2016 to create the world’s first commercial space station. The company announced the news of Twitter:
The exact date when the space tourists will go into orbit has not been announced yet, but the company says it will happen no earlier than at the end of the next year, most likely in October 2021.
Houston-based startup Axiom Space reached an agreement with SpaceX to send three space tourists to the ISS in March 2020. According to preliminary data, the duration of the tour will be 10 days, 2 of which the tourists will spend flying to their destination, and 8 days will be spent on board the space station. A professional Axiom commander will travel with the tourist to assist them.
Axiom will use a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule and a Falcon 9 rocket for the mission. Crew Dragon is a capsule developed by SpaceX for NASA to fly astronauts to the ISS. According to the company, this will be “the first-ever fully private” flight to the International Space Station. The mission, dubbed SpaceX Axiom Space-1 (AX-1), will launch from Florida.
Earlier, NASA chief financial officer said that this space flight and a few days of rest on the ISS will cost tourists $59 million.
Recently, NASA has also selected Axiom to build an addition to the space station, which will be attached to it for research.
SpaceX has also signed a deal with another company called Space Adventures. However, this mission will not get to the ISS but will let four private space tourists orbit the Earth.