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πŸ‘¨β€πŸš€ First commercial spacewalk could become reality this year

πŸ‘¨β€πŸš€ First commercial spacewalk could become reality this year

Inspiration4 has announced a private space program with the ambition of making the first commercial space walk reality.

Jakob Holgersson
Jakob Holgersson

The firsts in human space travel keep racking up, with a heavy emphasis on the space tourism sector. Less than a year ago, Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos were competing to pioneer space tourism. We've already covered how Yusaku Maezawa is poised to become the first space tourist to fly around the moon in 2023.

We also previously covered the Inspiration4 mission, the first private orbital flight. Well, on February 14, Jared Isaacman, the brains behind that mission announced a program planned to consist of up to three flights: the Polaris program.

The first of these voyages is known as Polaris Dawn. Aimed to take place "no earlier than the fourth quarter of 2022", it aims to leave a mark of its own. The big headline is of course the first commercial spacewalk.

Polaris Dawn mission badge. Image: Polaris Dawn

While commercial, the flight shouldn't be dismissed as pure tourism, as the crew will conduct research. The spacewalk isn't just an adrenaline rush, it's a test for SpaceX's extravehicular activity (EVA) suits. The suits in question are intended to be a stepping stone towards those that will be used on the moon and mars: suits that are intended to be manufactured by the thousands.

That's not the only noteworthy aspect of the mission, however. The mission will be conducted from a SpaceX Dragon capsule launched using a Falcon 9 and will be the highest earth orbit ever attempted. That's the very limit of the capabilities of that spacecraft.

Beyond that, the crew will perform research to see the impact of long-duration spaceflights on the human body. Research vital not only for travel to mars and beyond but also is very likely to benefit life on earth. And of course, it's poised to be the first crew to make use of the Starlink laser-based communications system.