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Origin:Space Technology and Applications International Forum (STAIF-2004)
Abstract:Despite having used some $1 trillion to develop space technology, government space agencies have not reduced the cost of space travel from what it was when Yuri Gagarin first flew to orbit in 1961. However, private activities aimed at realising space tourism have recently demonstrated the prospect of achieving sub-orbital space flights at 1/1,000 the cost of comparable flights performed by Nasa in 1961. The growth of sub-orbital tourism could lead on to orbital tourism services, for which there is known to be very large potential demand. The growth of a large space tourism industry will be very beneficial both for the space industry which is shrinking for lack of demand, and for the world economy as a whole at a time when unemployment is at historically high levels due to lack of new industries.
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