The Second Space Race

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S. Fawkes (2006), JBIS, 59, 364-367

Refcode: 2006.59.364
Keywords: Space tourism, space race, travel and tourism, SpaceShipOne, Virgin Galactic, Rocketplane, Space Adventures

This paper compares and contrasts the characteristics of the first space race, which ran from the late 1950s to the late 1990s, and the second space race that began with the successful space flight of SpaceShipOne in 2004. The first space race was between superpowers seeking to establish geo-political dominance in the Cold War. The second space race will be between competing companies seeking to establish low cost access to space for ordinary people. The first space race achieved its geo- political objectives but did not open up low cost access to space but rather restricted access to a select few, highly trained astronauts and cosmonauts. The second space race, driven by the size and growth of the travel and tourism industry, promises to open up access to space to millions of space tourists.

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