The Private SpaceX Odyssey Around The Moon
The private SpaceX mission around the Moon that is planned for late 2018, for two paying tourists, will be the first private trip beyond low Earth orbit and the first to the Moon in over 46 years! The mission is intended to utilize SpaceX’s new Falcon Heavy rocket and crew capsule ‘Crew Dragon’. The flight may also coincide with the 50th anniversary of NASA’s Apollo 8 mission to the Moon.
Fun Facts About The Tourism Flight ‘Out Of This World’
- In early 2017, SpaceX announced that it intended to send two unidentified paying passengers on a fantastic journey to circumnavigate the Moon and return to Earth on a free-return trajectory! How amazing would that be!
- If completed the flight would coincide with the 50th anniversary of NASA’s Apollo 8 mission to the Moon – the first time humans left Earth’s orbit and ventured into deep space. It would also be the first time humans visited the Moon since Apollo 17 in 1972!
- Only the ill-fated Apollo 13 moon mission has completed a similar free-return trip as the other Apollo missions all entered orbit around the Moon.
- SpaceX intends to utilize an altered version of their crewed spacecraft Crew Dragon which has been developed as part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program.
- The Dragon 2 will be launched atop SpaceX’s recently developed Falcon Heavy rocket, powerful enough to escape Earth’s gravity.
- The private spaceflight is intended to lift-off from the historic Pad 39A, at the Kennedy Space Center; the same launch pad used by the Saturn V during the Apollo program’s moon missions.
- The Crew Dragon will then complete a near week long automatic cruise to and from the Moon before re-entering Earth’s atmosphere faster than any other spacecraft!
- Other similar private flights are expected to follow as other wealthy potential space tourists express interest in completing a similar ‘out of the world’ mission!