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writing for godot

SpaceX Competitors that are Changing Space Travel In 2018

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Written by MaskedMarvel   
Tuesday, 06 February 2018 22:23


Speculation on the future of space travel has been rife for the past decade. With the recent announcement by SpaceX that it will take a trip around the moon with two tourists generating excitement, the owner of SpaceX, Elon Musk is the most visible regarding space exploration.

There are other competitors out there. Google is sponsoring the Lunar XPRIZE contest this year. This competition will award the first company to land a spacecraft on the moon. The first place prize money is $20 million. Venture capitalists get a chance to invest in space-bound ventures. This will, in turn, inject the needed capital and resources to some of the companies. Although they do not enjoy a significant market share like that of SpaceX, some companies are looking to revolutionize space travel for mankind. Max Polyakov, managing director of Firefly Aerospace, and through his space company, he will be able to provide small cost space launches for clients with low capacity needs.

Companies are aggressively pursuing programs that will send humankind to space on a regular basis. Some of them are:



Space Nation

It has its headquarters in Helsinki, Finland. Their belief is space travel will change human life for the better. Two childhood friends, KalleVaha-Jaakola and Mazdak Nassir launched the company in 2013. They have broken crowdfunding records and have signed a collaboration agreement with NASA. They are also the first company in the space industry to join the United Nations World Trade Organization as an Affiliate member. They recently launched a competition for aspiring astronauts. The winner of the contest gets sent on a space mission. They are in the process of developing an app that seeks to make the dream of space travel accessible to everyone on earth.

SpaceIL

They are participating in this year’s Lunar XPRIZE contest. It got launched in 2011 with its operations base in Israel. It has a stellar reputation and the belief of many associating with this company is that it is a good investment. It has connections both with the Israeli government and the business community. This has given them access to funding and resources. It is currently seeking to raise $30 million to complete its spacecraft project.



Bigelow Aerospace

This is an American startup company located in North Las Vegas, Nevada. Founded in 1998 by Robert Bigelow, Bigelow Aerospace seeks to build a set of space habitats that will facilitate creating and expanding space stations. They managed to attach their first model BEAM to the international space station in 2016.

Odyne Space

Based in Portland Oregon, they are working on a more efficient rocket to transport small amounts of cargo. Their main aim is to reduce the cost of sending Nanosatellites to space. They seek to become the infrastructure for space economy.

Ixion

It has its headquarters in Texas and has over 15years of experience in the aerospace sector. The core objective of Ixion is to deliver systems that are intelligent and able to carry out safe operations. Having already secured a deal with NASA, Ixion is looking to convert upper stages of a rocket into long-term habitats.

Axiom Space

Axiom Space got founded by Michael Suffredini. He was the former head of the International Space Station. When the old ISS gets decommissioned, Axiom seeks to attach the basis of the new ISS to the old one by making it independent. Its space station accommodates private explorers and professional astronauts. It is considered the world’s first commercial space station.

Deep Space Industries

This is an American company with global operations. Their core objective is mining asteroids. Asteroids contain an unknown number of chemical and metallic compositions that get switched from sulfur to gold. Prospecting missions are set to be launched soon first targeting Near Earth Steroids.

Vulcan Aerospace

It got launched by Paul Allen in 2011. It seeks to facilitate a switch from the current orbital launch to a cheaper and flexible model. Vulcan Aerospace has designed high atmosphere planes that it uses in deploying payloads into low earth orbit.

Rocket Lab

This is the concept of Peter Beck, a New Zealand national. Rocket Lab have their launching station and have developed their rocket engine. They sell small rockets that can deliver satellites into an eccentric low earth orbit.

Conclusion

Space


Though launches are not cheap or frequently done, it looks like this is the perfect time to start getting into the space business. Max Polyakov from Firefly Aerospace sees both young and small rocket companies taking over soon. The year ahead looks like it is going to bring excitement all around, and could bring tremendous development in the space industry.


 

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