“We’re finally able to open our doors to private citizens and allow others to experience the magic of living and working in space,” mentioned Dana Weigel, deputy supervisor for the area station at NASA. “The dream is really to allow everyone access to space, and this is a pretty exciting starting point here.”
Producers of Discovery’s “Who Wants to Be an Astronaut” count on the winner to be on board for the second Axiom mission to the area station, which could take off six or seven months after the primary one. For now, an settlement between the Discovery staff and Axiom has not been finalized, and NASA has but to decide on Axiom to conduct the second personal area tourism flight.
The NASA-led half of the station may accommodate two personal astronaut missions a yr, area company officers have mentioned, and different firms are additionally keen on collaborating.
“We are seeing a lot of interest in private astronaut missions, even outside of Axiom,” Ms. Weigel mentioned. “At this point, the demand exceeds what we actually believe the opportunities on station will be.”
Still, on Tuesday, Axiom introduced two individuals who could be within the seats for that second mission: Peggy Whitson, a former NASA astronaut who now works for Axiom, would be the commander, and John Shoffner, a paying passenger who made his fortune as head of an organization that manufactures conduits for fiber optic cables, will function pilot for the mission.
Dr. Whitson, who holds the report for essentially the most cumulative time in area by a NASA astronaut — 665 days — joined Axiom as a guide a yr in the past, in hopes of attending to area once more and including to her report. “Yes, most definitely,” she mentioned. “That was the carrot.”
Mr. Peterson mentioned plans for the Discovery present grew out of discussions with Axiom early in 2020 and that it could be “a premium documentary” and much less like “Survivor” or different ruthless actuality tv competitions.