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|Origin:||MASTER OF SPACE STUDIES PROGRAM 1998/99|
Space tourism is a natural extension of today's worldwide tourism industry. Instead of traveling around the world, tourists go to space. Anyone will be able to buy a ticket. No astronaut training is needed. This has not happened yet, but a lot of activities are taking place in the world today to make it come true.
Space tourism may be the missing link of space travel that we have been trying to discover for so many years. With the help of space tourism, we can build an infrastructure in space and radically decrease the launch costs. There can be hundreds of thousands of space tourists flying each year, creating a giant market. Through this infrastructure, other commercial ventures will also be possible. Space will finally be opened up for business.
The thesis has two objectives. The first objective is to try to discern what importance space tourism may have for space commercialization. The second objective is to provide a detailed overview of the space tourism field. In order to fulfill the objectives, extensive research was conducted on space tourism. This was done through material available at the host institution as well as what could be found on the Internet. Interviews were also conducted with leading people in the space tourism community.