Europe’s first port for space tourism will be in England
The British government has announced its plan to build the first commercial port for space travel for tourism purposes in the United Kingdom, which would be functional by 2018.
For a couple of years we began to hear more and more a most peculiar term when talking about the exploration of space, and the tireless ambition of man to overcome our borders, to eliminate them. The term in question is spacial tourism, and with him they refer to something that is far from the most classic science fiction films. No, space tourism is real and, above all, two men find themselves investing hard in this future market.
Elon Musk and the outgoing Sir Richard Branson have been the two most frequently mentioned names when it comes to space tourism. Founders of Spacex and Virgin galactic, respectively, these are the two companies that have become the most popular in the field, spreading their ambition even to some governments, and the UK authorities have announced in The Guardian their plans to build the first spaceport for tourism purposes of the country and the continent, in one of eight pre-selected locations.
The candidates are Stornoway Airport, RAF Kinloo, RAF Lossiemouth, RAF Leuchars, Campbelltown Airport, Glasgow Prestwick Airport, Llanbedr Airport and Newquay Cornwall Airport, as announced by the British Minister of Aviation, Robert Goodwill. The UK space tourism port will be ready to go live in 2018Therefore, during the next four years the necessary works will be carried out for its realization.
From this spaceport, the ships made by the aforementioned companies SpaceX, Virgin Galactic, or any other could take off, such as in the future Starchaser Industries, XCOR, AERA and even the renowned aviation company Boeing, which also announced that it is already working on its plans to enter the new market dedicated to these space travel for commercial purposes.
Is space tourism profitable?
With the direct incursion of the government of the United Kingdom in a market that has not even been officially born, much less has paid off, is space tourism already profitable? Right now, of course not, but the UK authorities have done their math and the numbers appear to be very promising to them.
Currently the British space industry employs almost 35 thousand people and is a sector with a current value of about 11 billion pounds, which is equivalent to almost 14 billion euros. For England this is a long-term but ‘safe’ bet, given that they are confident that this market will explode in the coming decades and by around 2030 it will reach a value of at least £ 40bn.
But now the picture is very different. Virgin Galactic, for example, plans to make its first commercial trip with one of its “spaceships” (which technically skim space) but each of the passengers on board will have to pay almost 140,000 euros for the short walk. Space tourism, for now, will be very limited, only for the wealthiest.
In any case, the space race seems to have already begun and the construction of the world’s second spaceport will begin, taking into account the Spaceport America in New Mexico City, in the United States, from where Sir Richard Branson himself plans to leave. the border with space later this year. In the not too distant future, many may take a well-deserved space vacation from England.