SpaceX-Vast's first commercial space station to go up in 2025
SpaceX and California-based start-up Vast, are planning to send the first commercial space station to orbit, as soon as August 2025. Shortly after the first station, a small module called Haven-1 is launched, crew members will be sent there via SpaceX's Dragon capsule. The station will eventually expand and connect with other modules which will be launched later.
Why does this story matter?
The International Space Station (ISS) is expected to operate only until 2030 and will be brought down in early 2031. Several private companies including Northrop Grumman and Jeff Bezos-owned Blue Origin are working on their own versions of a space station. However, it looks like SpaceX and Vast will achieve the feat of sending the first-ever commercial space station to orbit.
Haven-1 can accommodate 4 people at once
Since the Haven-1 station is small, measuring roughly 33 feet long and around 12.5 feet wide, it will only require a single launch to make it to orbit. It will take off atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. Haven-1 will be able to accommodate up to four crew members at once and will house a docking hatch designed for Crew Dragon, SpaceX's human-rated spacecraft.
The space station will provide full-time connectivity
The space station will support stays for up to 30 days and will provide opportunities for "science, research and in-space manufacturing." As per Vast, the space station will provide full-time connectivity via onboard wifi during the stay. One of the company's main objectives is a bigger station with artificial gravity and intends to launch additional modules in the future.
The space station is open to "private individuals" as well
In fact, Vast-1, the mission that will send the first four occupants to the space station, is currently available for booking. The company is selling the seats not only to space agencies and professional astronauts but also to "private individuals." However, the company has not yet disclosed how much it would charge for stays aboard the space station.
Vast is a big step toward space privatization
"A commercial rocket launching a commercial spacecraft with commercial astronauts to a commercial space station is the future of low Earth orbit, and with Vast we're taking another step toward making that future a reality," said Tom Ochinero, SpaceX's senior vice president of commercial business.
SpaceX-Vast will clock a major milestone if everything goes well
If SpaceX and Vast are to succeed, it'll be the first time a commercial rocket company has launched humans to a commercial space station, marking a major milestone. They will beat the private Starlab project by Nanoracks, Lockheed Martin, and Voyager space, scheduled for 2027, and Axiom which is also aiming to launch the first phase of its orbital platform by "late 2025."Share this timeline