France Media AgencyMay 11, 2021 11:01:37 AM
Axis Space, the company behind the spacecraft, said in a joint press conference with NASA on Monday that the crew’s training for the first full private voyage to the International Space Station (ISS) would begin soon. The rocket, built by another space company, Elon Musk’s SpaceX, was launched by four astronauts in late January. One in four – NASA senior Michael Lopez-Alexria – has been in space before.
The other three merchants were Larry Connor, an American, Mark Pathi, a Canadian, and an Israeli, Eaton Stebe.
Michael Safredini, head and CEO of Axiom Space, said the mission, called AX-1, would take about 10 days.
The astronauts will live and work in the U.S. section of the space station and plan to conduct several scientific experiments while in orbit.
“Next week I’m going to start calling it intense training,” said Ax-1 commander Lopez-Alexria. “From there the pace will increase, and we’ll all basically start in the fall in full-time ISS systems and Crew Dragon training.”
The four have only been together a few times since the Govt-19 epidemic, but he said he will travel to a “bond” camp in Alaska in July.
Lopez-Alegria said full-time training would begin in August and mission pilot Connor would begin in September.
Beginning in October, the four will begin Houston-based training on ISS systems and SpaceX’s Crew Dragon capsule.
Axiom Space is considered the first step in a plan to build the first commercial space station.
When asked about the price of the Axis-1, Safredini said, “We don’t talk about pricing in general.”
“It’s widely reported – tens of thousands of numbers – I wouldn’t argue,” he said.
Phil McAllister, NASA’s Director of Business Space Development, called the mission “a renaissance in American human spaceflight.”
“This is a real penetration point,” he said.
The US space agency is targeting two such private passengers a year.
“We are increasingly interested in private astronaut missions,” said Angela Hart, NASA’s Commercial Low Earth Orbit Development Manager.
“We hope that the demand at this point will actually be the opportunities at the station,” Hart said.
Seven “astronauts” were launched on Russian Soyuz rockets between 2001 and 2009 by ISS.