Beijing, Dec 27 IANS | 10 months ago

Chinese travellers will be able to undertake space trips by 2014 end following an agreement signed here Friday between a Chinese travel agency and Netherlands-based space tourism firm.


Travellers will have to pay a minimum of 580,000 yuan (about $95,000) to board the Lynx Mark I spacecraft produced by the US private aerospace company XCOR, Xinhua reported citing Zhang Yong, chief executive officer of Dexo Travel, a Chinese travel agency focusing on high-end travellers.

Participants will get a week-long physical training at Royal Dutch Airlines or Air France before their space trip, said Zhang. "The spaceship only carries one tourist, who sits in the co-pilot seat, and a pilot astronaut."

"The spaceship arrives in outer space 60 minutes after its take-off and will fly in space for 20 minutes while the tourist enjoys the view of the earth and space."

The Lynx Mark I spacecraft, expected to begin flights in the fourth quarter of 2014, will take participants into sub-space to a height of 60 km. The Lynx Mark II spacecraft, which is expected to start flights in 2015, will take participants into space to a height of 103 km, said Alex Tang, CEO of Space Expedition Corporation (SXC) Asia.

A total of 100 travellers will board the Lynx Mark I. There will be no quota for the number of participants on the Lynx Mark II, said Tang, adding that as Chinese customers have shown great interest in space trips, SXC has reserved at least six spots for Chinese on the Lynx Mark I.

(Posted on 27-12-2013)