Inspiration4: The Watershed Mission Of Space Exploration!
We do not want to fuel controversy between space companies, but the SpaceX flight currently scheduled for September 15 has all the numbers to be really a pleasure trip, tourist, in fact. The Inspiration4 flight will not go to the Space Station (as the first space tourists did, from Dennis Tito onwards), but it will reach the Earth orbit and it will stay there for about four days, floating in Space as instead Virgi- Galactic and Blue Origin flights did not do: the crew will be entirely composed by tourists, from pilot to passengers. They will depart from Launch Complex 23 at Kennedy Space Center aboard the Crew Dragon Resilience spacecraft, launched from a Falcon 9.
One thing is for sure… The prospect of space travel will be very different after the launch of Inspiration4. We can in fact say with reasonable certainty that the date of departure, which at the moment seems confirmed for next September 15, will be the watershed between two historical eras: the one started with Gagarin when orbital space was mostly a realm reserved exclusively for nations and to their selected astronauts… and the one after Inspiration4, when space travel will be definitely within the reach of private companies and ordinary citizens. It is difficult to say what this transition will mean: whether space travel and its benefits will be democratized throughout society or will be exploited exclusively by corporations and the super-rich. For now, the answer could be a bit of both.
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