'First space hotel', operational by 2025, to feature artificial gravity
Since Yuri Gagarin became the first man to travel to space in 1961, only over 500 people have explored the outer realms of Earth's atmosphere. However, one company, The Gateway Foundation, is looking to change that by setting up a hotel right in space in the recent future. But is this legitimate or is it yet another pipe dream concept project? Let's find out.
The Gateway Foundation has created a design for the first commercial space hotel, Von Braun Space Station (VBSS), which could house 1,250 guests at a time. It's named after German-born Nazi aerospace engineer Wernher von Braun who later acquired American citizenship. The VBSS, expected to be operational by 2025, is inspired by von Braun's designs for a space station published back in the 1950s.
The space hotel will feature a 190m-wide rotating wheel which would simulate one-sixth of the Earth's gravity to enable guests to walk, unlike on the International Space Station. The hotel will consist of 24 sleeping modules and will host 100 tourists a week. Described as being similar to a cruise ship, it will feature restaurants, bars, musical concerts, movie screenings, educational seminars, etc.
Interestingly, the station will be built using automated systems such as drones and robots, while in orbit, and will also make use of GSAL, a segment assembly line for construction of space stations. The interiors will be Earth-like to make the space station seem homely.
Meanwhile, Project director Tim Alatorre told Dezeen, "Because the overall costs are still so high most people assume that space tourism will only be available to the super-rich." And while Alatorre admits that it's true, he added, "Eventually, going to space will just be another option people will pick for their vacation, just like going on a cruise or going to Disney World."
Of course, the Earth's view from your window can only paint a pretty picture for so long. In space, people are exposed to greater amounts of radiations and space travel takes a toll on one's bones, muscles, and cardiovascular systems. Furthermore, with this complex a structure, everything needs to work perfectly or it could mean disaster. There's a reason why astronauts undergo strenuous training.