So far Richard Branson is the only person game in town to try and provide civilian access to space. For $250,000 a pop, it’s not surprising that some companies are starting to shoot a little lower, figuratively and literally.
Paragon Space Development Corp is the prime example, with the unveiling of its space balloon, “World View.”
Floating to about 100,000 feet or 18 miles above Earth’s surface, “World View” will allow passengers to have a stunning view of the planet.
Gizmodo accurately points out that “this altitude isn’t quite high enough for zero gravity, and it’s not extreme enough to require space suits or air masks.”
So, then what’s the point? I know it’s cheaper by a lot, only $75,000, but you’re basically just getting a nice view then. That may do it for some people, but not this guy.
So yeah, if I’m going to spend a boatload of money, I’m going to get to experience the real thing and go 60 miles higher in Branson’s rocket plane. And that’s another thing, “World View” is a balloon, hanging… just hanging.
That would freak me out. I want to be in something with an engine and power, not hanging over nothing by some cables. Let’s face it, if you have $75,000 to spend on a few minutes in fake space, you probably have $250,000 to spend on a few minutes in real space… Go to real space.