According to various reports, Google co-founder Sergey Brin has invested in a space tourism company. Furthermore, Brin has expressed interest in going into orbit himself within three years.
Brin has plunked down a $5 million down payment for the option to book a seat on a future orbital flight with Space Adventures, a U.S.-based space tourism company. His investmentwill help the company to launch its first private mission to the International Space Station, but will also be credited to the cost of a future space flight. Such a flight could cost $35 million or more, so a $5 million credit would cover only a portion of the total cost.
Brin, 34, said in a statement today, “I am a big believer in the exploration and commercial development of the space frontier, and am looking forward to the possibility of going into space.
Space Adventures currently allows clients to travel to the International Space Station via the Russian Soyuz flights by occupying one of three sites on the craft. But the Russian space agency has warned that these extra seats may disappear by 2010, when they increase their crew from 3 to 6 and will need all available seats.
To get around this, Space Adventures is looking to pay for its own Soyuz mission in 2011, with the option of buying more. These flights would then carry two passengers. A Russian commander would occupy the other seat.