Saturday, August 05, 2006

Keeping the dream of space flight alive!

From the time that I was a little girl and first started watching re-runs of ST:TOS, I knew that I wanted to be an astronaut. I used this as the topic for my career research paper in 9th grade with the intention of becoming an Air Force pilot and then moving on to NASA. I was devastated when I learned that my poor eyesight would keep me from becoming a pilot; I had to adjust my life goals. I eventually turned to education and became a teacher. I was still in college when the first Teacher in Space, Christa McAuliffe, perished in the Challenger accident. Like the rest of the country, I mourned the lives that were lost and worried about the future of the space program, but I also had the added concern that this would close the door to other teachers venturing into space. Luckily, Barbara Morgan picked up the torch handed off by McAuliffe and will join the STS-118 crew, which is set to launch in June of 2007.

I must admit that I gave up on my dream of reaching space for many years until I started hearing about space tourism. At this point, it is still for the very wealthy, but I’m still young(ish), so I have hope again that I, too, will be able to reach the stars some day!
When once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been and there you will always long to return.
-Leonardo Da Vinci (1452-1519)

Blog #7 by Pat Hoar & Erin Lundberg
of Space Adventures, Ltd.

The experience was more fulfilling than I could have ever imagined. I have a newfound sense of wonder seeing the Earth and stars from such an incredible perspective. Certainly, through my training I was prepared for the technical aspects, but I had no idea that I would be flooded with such amazement and joy after seeing my first sunrise and sunset from space and the feeling of continual weightlessness. It was an unforgettable experience that I am truly grateful for and will relive in my mind for the rest of my life.
-Dr. Greg Olsen (who flew to the ISS on an orbital mission)

Today space travel is no longer in the realm of fantasy and science fiction; it is a reality that thousands of individuals will soon be able to experience. Space Adventures, Ltd., the only company in the world to have sent paying passengers to space and the only company in the world to offer everything from simulations to actual spaceflights, is developing their suborbital spaceflight program which will enable individuals from all over the world to realize their dream of spaceflight.

Space Adventures' suborbital program will consist of a detailed four-day flight preparation and training experience which will familiarize each passenger with the flight program, critical vehicle systems, flight operations, zero-gravity conditions, in-flight accelerations and spaceflight safety procedures. On launch day, passengers will fly into space, 62 miles (100 kms) above Earth and experience up to five minutes of continuous weightlessness--all the while gazing at the vast blackness of space set against the blue horizon of the Earth below.

However, potential space explorers need not wait until launch date to start participating in their spaceflight experience. Today, they can join Space Adventures’ Spaceflight Club and begin taking the necessary steps towards becoming one of the first private citizens to experience space. In September 2004, Space Adventures unveiled its Spaceflight Club to serve as the unifying voice for the next generation of space explorers and to provide members with the tools, experience and training needed to achieve their goal of spaceflight.

With each year of membership in the Spaceflight Club all annual dues accrue as credit toward the price of a future suborbital spaceflight. In addition to investing in their suborbital spaceflight, Spaceflight Club members will be kept in the forefront of this new and exciting industry via member newsletters, VIP events and other exclusive benefits. Become a Spaceflight Club member today and join the ranks of space enthusiasts worldwide including Eugene Roddenberry, son of legendary science-fiction creator, Gene Roddenberry, whose television series changed the face of television.

For more information on Space Adventures’ Spaceflight Club, please visit http://www.spaceadventures.com/flight/spaceflightclub. For more information on Space Adventures’ suborbital spaceflights, please visit http://www.spaceadventures.com/flight/suborbital.

For more information, check out Space Tourism: A Multimedia Special Report!

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