Study Finds High Potential for Space Tourism and Events in Low-Earth Orbit
A group of companies empanelled by NASA to study about commercial viability of low-Earth orbit has reported that successful commercialisation can be undertaken by carrying out various activities in the International Space Station US National Laboratory.
These include in-space assembly and servicing of large structures and satellites, sponsorship and marketing; accommodations for space tourism; in-space manufacturing of unique materials or products; video products for entertainment use including films, documentaries and sporting events; and transportation of people and cargo to and from low-Earth orbit.
High costs for crew and cargo transportation continue to present a barrier to market entry for both company and consumer. One way to reduce transportation costs could be with economies of scale that could be achieved through a larger market. NASA could play a key role in helping stimulate and facilitate market growth by providing access to the space station to catalyze new markets, aid in technology development, and strengthen the burgeoning industry. Eventually NASA is expected to be a key customer to future commercially operated destinations in low-Earth orbit.
The companies involved in the study were:
NanoRacks, LLC, of Webster, Texas, Northrop Grumman of Dulles, Virginia,Sierra Nevada Corporation of Louisville, Colorado, Space Adventures, Inc., of Vienna, Maxar Technologies, formerly SSL, Inc., of Palo Alto, California, Axiom Space, Inc. of Houston, Blue Origin, LLC, of Kent, Washington,The Boeing Company of Houston, Deloitte Consulting of Manhattan Beach, California KBRWyle of Houston, Lockheed Martin Corporation of Littleton, Colorado,McKinsey & Company, Inc. of Washington, D.C.