Space tourism – space travel to low earth orbit or in entertainment or research purposes, the flights are paid from private funds.
Currently only used for the purpose of space tourism is the international space station (ISS). The flights are operated using Russian Soyuz spacecraft to the Russian segment of the ISS.
Organization of flying tourists engaged Roscosmos and Space Adventures. Space Adventures is collaborating with “Roskosmos” since 2001. Only with the help of this company in the space of seven tourists visited (end of 2009), and one of them (Charles Simonyi) twice.
The space tourists conducted training in Star city near Moscow, as well as in small aircraft that simulates weightlessness.
Although the cost of the tour to the orbit is 20-23 million dollars, the number of people wishing to see the space growing steadily. Since July 2007 the cost of space tour has grown from 20 to 30-40 million dollars. In addition, we announced a new service price — output space tourist into space — 15 million dollars.
The American company Space Adventures has signed with Roscosmos and rocket-kosmicheskaia “Energy” agreement, according to which, since 2013 the Russian ships “the Union” will annually deliver to the ISS up to three tourists, according to the website of the company. Thus, space tourism using “Unions”, which was interrupted in 2009 due to the increase in the number of astronauts on the ISS and, consequently, reduce the number of seats available on the ships will actually be resumed. As reported by an American company able to carry tourists to the ISS appeared due to the fact that the amount of “Unions” per year increased from four to five.
Space tourists visiting the ISS
Dennis Tito (USA) – April 2001
Mark Shuttleworth (South Africa) in April 2002
Gregory Olsen (USA) – October 2005
The Anusha Ansari (USA) – September 2006
Charles Simony (USA) – April 2007
Richard Garriott (USA) – October 2008
Charles Simony (USA) – March 2009
Guy Laliberte (Canada) – September 2009
After 2009 space tourists never flew to the International space station (ISS). This is due to the fact that since 2009 it is planned to increase the number of space station crew to six people.
Since 2012 the number of annual launches of spacecraft “Soyuz” will be increased from four to five. Additional fifth run can be used to send to the ISS space tourist.