A private space exploration outfit, the Golden Spike Company, has announced plans for private sector human lunar expeditions but little else as to how it will work has been revealed.
The company, according to Golden Spike’s website, is “working to implement and operate a human space transportation system at commercially successful price points” and counts several space industry veterans among its board members including Gerry Griffin, former director of Johnson Space Center and Apollo flight director, as chairman of the board. Many of the others list in the Golden Spike team have a background in space exploration, either as a result of working for NASA on successful missions or in engineering and design capacities, leaving little doubt that they’ll be able to execute their vision.
Northrop Grumman, Armadillo Aerospace, Space Florida, Paragon Space Development and the International Lunar Observatory Association are just a few organisations that are involved with Golden Spike’s plans in some capacity.
The company hopes to develop advances in the private spaceflight sector to “offer human expeditions to the Moon at prices comparable to robotic flagship missions. By dramatically lowering costs—to levels that rival robotic science mission budgets—we’re going to open the Moon to expeditions by space and science agencies, corporations, and individuals from around the world.”
The pricetag will still be pretty hefty regardless but should still be cheaper than undergoing years of training at NASA.
Golden Spike is teasing more information to come, in the form of public participation, in 2013.
Source: Ars Technica