July 21, 2024

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SpaceX astronauts’ full private mission to return home from the International Space Station after nearly a week’s delay

SpaceX astronauts’ full private mission to return home from the International Space Station after nearly a week’s delay

The mission, dubbed AX-1, was carried out by a startup in Houston, Texas Axiom SpaceHe books rocket flights, provides all necessary training, and coordinates trips to the International Space Station for those who can afford them.

The four crew members – Michael Lopez Allegria, a former NASA astronaut turned Axiom employee who led the mission; Israeli businessman Eitan Stibi. Canadian investor Mark Pathy; Ohio real estate mogul Larry Connor – They will leave the space station at 8:35 p.m. ET Saturday aboard the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule. They will take a day off by flying through orbit at approximately 1:46 p.m. ET on Sunday, re-entering the atmosphere at about 1:46 p.m. ET and parachuting into landing gear off the coast of Florida.

For the first 12 days of their stay on the space station, the group adhered to a strict schedule, which included nearly 14 hours a day of activities, including research that was It has been designed by many research hospitals, universities, technology companies, etc. They also spent time organizing awareness events through video conferences with children and students.
She added that the delay in the weather gave them “more time to enjoy the beautiful scenery of the blue planet and review the huge amount of work that was successfully completed during the mission.” Axiom
It is not clear how much this task will cost. Axiom previously revealed the price of $55 million per seat for a 10-day trip to the International Space Station, but the company declined to comment on the financial terms of this particular mission after saying at a press conference last year that the price was in the “tens of millions”.
The mission is made possible by close coordination between Axiom, SpaceX and NASA, as the International Space Station is funded and operated by the government. The space agency revealed some details About how much she charges for using her 20-year-old lab.

For each mission, getting needed support from NASA astronauts costs $5.2 million to commercial customers, and all mission support and planning that NASA borrows is another $4.8 million. In space, food alone costs an estimated $2,000 per day per person. Supplies to and from the space station for a commercial crew cost $88,000 to $164,000 per person, per day.

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But the additional days the AX-1 crew spent in space due to weather does not add to the personal total price, according to a NASA statement.

“Knowing that ISS mission objectives, such as recent Russian spacewalks or weather events, could result in docking delays, NASA negotiated the contract with a strategy that did not require compensation for additional docking delays,” the statement read.

This is not the first time that customers or non-astronauts who visit the International Space Station have paid such as Russia Seats sold out On his Soyuz spacecraft Many thrill seekers during the past years.
Crew of 11 aboard the International Space Station on April 9, 2022. Clockwise from bottom right: Flight 67 commander Tom Marshburn with flight engineers Oleg Artemyev, Denis Matveyev, Sergey Korsakov, Raja Chari, Kayla Baron and Matthias Maurer;  and Axiom Mission 1 astronauts (middle row from left) Mark Bathy, Eitan Stipe, Larry Conner, and Michael Lopez Allegria.

But the AX-1 is the first mission with An all-civilian crew with no active members of the Government Space Force accompanies them in the capsule during the flight to and from the International Space Station. It is also the first time that ordinary citizens have traveled to the International Space Station aboard a US-made spacecraft.

The mission sparked another round of debate about whether the people who pay for their way into space should be called “astronauts,” although it should be noted that the trip to the International Space Station requires a much larger investment of time and money rather than taking a short period. , semi-supported trip. Orbital on a rocket built by companies like blue origin or Virgo Galaxy
Lopez Allegria, Veteran Four flights into space between 1995 and 2007 During his time at NASA, he said this: “This mission is very different from what you may have heard on some recent missions – especially sub-orbital missions. We are not space tourists. I think space plays an important role in tourism, but that’s not what the axiom is.” .
While paying customers won’t get astronaut wings from the US government, they were given a “Universal Astronaut Insignia” – a gold pin recently designed by the Society of Space Explorers, an international group It consists of astronauts from 38 countries† Lopez Allegria presented Stibbe, Pathy and Connor brooches at a welcome party after the group cling at the space station.