Investment in space | Top 3 space stocks for nonquals in 2020

Investment in space | Top 3 space stocks for nonquals in 2020

Is it realistic to relax in space, or is space tourism a myth? What do you need to do to become a space tourist? Does money decide everything?

In the late XX - early XXI century, space exploration activities around the world began to stagnate. The work continued, but the society lost contact with this area, ceased to be interested in the industry news, which at the same time became less and less. Yes, astronauts regularly went into orbit to carry out complex tasks, NASA sent space shuttles to all the planets of the solar system, advanced satellites and space telescopes were launched to explore the Universe, but ordinary people completely moved away from this topic, and it ceased to haunt the minds of the broad masses.

The role of private business in space exploration

The average man knows not many private companies that have been trying to make space closer to people. First of all, this is the SpaceX Mask, which has been heard in recent years.

Several years ago, billionaires named Paul Allen and Richard Branson hatched plans to make space a tourist destination for the wealthy. The research and development they began were at first quite productive; high-tech spacecraft SpaceShipOne, as well as SpaceShipTwo, were successfully created. But no one has flown them and no one plans in the near future - there are not so many customers for such entertainment, and the competition in the supply is growing every year.

The promising Sea Launch project, or Sea Launch, also showed great promise. It was started by a group of countries, but their collaboration did not last long - the political situation made the implementation of the idea unlikely.

Space exploration by private space companies is still a utopia, romantic, but unreal. The reason for this state of affairs is simple: any attempt to conduct large-scale development for space is faced with the need for huge financial investments. No investors will invest in completely adventurous projects from which it is difficult to expect any benefits. If the state is involved in financing, then it is difficult to call the company private, because it will depend on other people's money and will always look back at the opinion of the government. And new amazing discoveries are usually not made by the state, but by enthusiasts charged with ideas.

Who managed to become a space tourist

Not just dreams, but a serious study of the idea of ​​space tourism, the Americans started back in 1967 (the project of commercial flights by Kraft Eric and Barron Hilton). But the first space tourist flew into space for his own, but for state money. Simple teacher Christa McAuliffe was chosen from among 11 thousand candidates who applied for the "Teacher in Space" competition. She completed a three-month training course and joined the crew of the Challenger shuttle. Unfortunately, the experiment ended in tragedy: on January 28, 1986, shortly after takeoff at an altitude of 14 km, the spacecraft lost control and exploded.

For more than 50 years, the information space has been agitated by messages about tourist space flights that will take place "in the near future", "in the coming years." In addition to Elon Musk's SpaceX, at least eight Western companies periodically announce the imminent implementation of their projects to send ordinary people into space. And they not only declare, but also sell tickets for future flights. Nevertheless, these "space tour operators" have not yet transported a single client.


Space tourism: Ilona Musk's illusions or an attraction accessible to everyone

On December 20, 2019, the American spacecraft CST-100 Starliner (Crew Space Transportation) developed by Boeing was launched. The first flight was abnormal, but not emergency. Two days later, the device successfully landed at the White Sands training ground. Nothing special, start-up like start-up.


However, there is a peculiarity in the ballistics of this and further Starliner launches. The rocket puts it not into space orbit, but into a suborbital trajectory. Such a trajectory is formed by the second stage - the oxygen-hydrogen grandfather "Centaurus", a real space steam locomotive, driven by the power of water vapor. The target orbit into which it delivers Starliner, at a cosmic apogee of 188 km, receives a perigee of 73 km. This is the atmosphere. If the Starliner passes that perigee, it will fall. Therefore, after separation from the "Centauri" on a suborbital trajectory, the spacecraft accelerates further to enter orbit by turning on its own engines for 40 seconds.

This scheme ballistically repeats the launch of the Space Shuttle, launched by solid-propellant boosters and its main engines, to a suborbital curve. There, the shuttle dropped the fuel tank, which flew along this trajectory up to the entry into the atmosphere, and entered space orbit using the orbital maneuvering engines.

Starliner copies the ballistics of the shuttle until it turns on its engines 30 minutes after launch. And the spent "Centaurus" falls into the ocean along a suborbital trajectory, which he formed for himself and the ship.

The Way Into the Earth

Why does Starliner need these tricks with a suborbital trajectory? Such trajectories come in different shapes, but all have a single ballistic basis - the ellipse of the orbital revolution of the body around the center of mass of the Earth. And according to the equation of motion, and in essence. These ellipses partially pass under the surface of the planet, crossing it at points that, when the body moves along such an orbit, become points of entry (fall) and exit (start). The part of the orbit above the Earth's surface is called the suborbital trajectory. The body on it should not make a complete real loop.

Otherwise, the suborbital trajectories are markedly different. Thus, the warheads of long-range intercontinental missiles rise hundreds of kilometers per atmosphere, but, having an underground perigee, they enter dense layers with a decent angle of inclination - 10-20 degrees to the horizon. To what depth the perigee will descend into the Earth and where exactly is the question of calculating such trajectories.

The second stage takes from the first elliptical motion with perigee deep in the planet's mantle. Its task is to bring the perigee to the surface and further into space, to the desired height. Based on the planned ascent level, it is easy to estimate the required energy, stage operation, fuel amount, main thrust flight time and other parameters. The second stage "inflates" around the Earth the suborbital trajectory obtained from the first, raising the perigee from the depths. The altitude at which to stop lifting is determined by the command to stop the engine.

The flight dynamics specialists have chosen an altitude of 73 km. But if perigee is needed in dense layers, why not leave it in the lower stratosphere, at an altitude of 15–20 km? And why not immediately take it out of the atmosphere, having received a fully space orbit?

What versions will there be?

To begin with, we can assume that the height of the perigee allows you to reduce the amount of fuel in the ship. The higher the perigee, the less speed is needed to lift it into space to a given altitude. But why then perigee in the atmosphere? Technical reasons are possible - for example, to exclude going into emergency space orbits with an unacceptably long stay in them (which is bad for both the crew and the batteries). If this is not an orbit, during an emergency separation the ship will enter dense layers, and its return will be quite regular. This means that in case of some failures, the suborbital trajectory will automatically provide a normal landing.

Is it realistic to relax in space, or is space tourism a myth? What do you need to do to become a space tourist? Does money decide everything?

Space tourism - private funded flights into space or low-earth orbit for recreational or research purposes.


The first space tourists [edit]

The idea of ​​space tourism was first reflected in a series of papers by Barron Hilton and Kraft Eric, published in 1967. They first tried to push the idea of ​​commercializing space. At the time, it was unsuccessful.

Space tourism began to develop rapidly at the end of the 20th century. In 1986, at the International Astronautical Congress, a report was presented on the topic "Potential Economic Implications of the Development of Space Tourism", which caused a lot of discussion not only in scientific but also in business circles.

The first tourist was supposed to be the American teacher Christy McAuliffe, who died in the 1986 Challenger shuttle launch. Following this incident, the US government passed a law that prohibited non-professionals from flying into space.

In 1990 and 1991, the first commercial cosmonauts Toyohiro Akiyama (Japan) and Helen Sharman (Great Britain) flew into space, who flew to the Soviet orbital station "Mir" on spacecraft Soyuz TM-11/Soyuz TM -10 and Soyuz TM-12/Soyuz TM-11 for privately funded non-state projects of the TV company TBS and Juneau (a consortium of British companies).

Flights to the ISS [edit]

Currently, the only one used for space tourism is the International Space Station (ISS). The flights are carried out by Russian Soyuz spacecraft to the ISS Russian Segment.

Roskosmos and Space Adventures are organizing tourist flights. Space Adventures has been cooperating with Roscosmos since 2001. In total, with the help of this company, seven tourists have already visited space (data at the end of 2012), and one of them (Charles Simonyi) twice.

Space tourists are trained in Star City, the city of Shchelkovo near Moscow, as well as in small airplanes that create weightlessness.

In 2020, the United States resumed the manned space program. For the first time since 2011, SpaceX, with the participation of NASA, twice delivered astronauts to the ISS on the Crew Dragon spacecraft. The prospects for the development of space tourism have again become a popular topic.

Space tourism as an indicator of reliability

A dozen and a half countries are now ranked among the space powers. In 2020, orbital launches were made by 8 countries. And only 3 countries launch manned spacecraft into space: Russia, the USA and China.

The level of reliability of space technology is determined by the success of sending a person into space and returning him to Earth healthy and unharmed. The highest level of development of cosmonautics is space flights of people with minimal training, space tourists. Today, only Russian cosmonautics is capable of offering tours into space. In total, 7 tourists visited space on the ISS. The previous "season" of space tourism ended in 2009

Space travel agencies without queues

Prior to the resumption of manned flights in the United States in 2020, more than 70 American astronauts traveled to the ISS since 2011 on Russian spacecraft.

The successful Crew Dragon manned launch immediately rekindled the debate about space tourism. It is believed that space tourism can include two types of flights that are possible for non-professionals: orbital and suborbital.

The only company providing real orbital space tourism services is Space Adventures. Through it, tourists got to the "Star City" for training, from there to Baikonur and then to the ISS. Price for one seat on the ship - from $ 20 million to $ 90 million.

Suborbital flights seem less challenging. The flight altitude is only 100 km (from the Earth to the ISS - about 330 km), the flight speed is about 950 m/s (for entering orbit - more than 2000 m/s). The suborbital "tour" is offered by Virgin Galactic, Blue Origin, Boeing. However, not a single tourist suborbital flight has been completed in a decade and a half due to difficult-to-solve safety problems. However, tickets for future flights, according to the assurances of the owners of the companies, have been sold for years ahead at a price of about $ 250,000 per seat.

Space tourism pitfalls

Part of the expert community is skeptical about the prospects for regular space tourism. Money and good health are not all a space tourist needs. After the euphoria from the flight, the stories of tourists returning from space boiled down to a description of hard working days: training, overload, nausea, etc.

Future "space tour operators", unlike classical ones, will not be able to remain silent about the list of "must-haves" to the delight of the spectacle of the cosmic dawn over the blue planet.

What assets in the aerospace industry might be interesting?


Almost half a century has passed since people left footprints on the moon. At that time, human space exploration was mainly focused on:

  • manned missions in low Earth orbit
  • unmanned scientific research

Now the high level of private funding, of course, technological advances and the growing interest from the public sector are forcing us to turn to the stars again. The investment gains for more affordable spacewalks can be significant. There are tremendous opportunities in the following areas:

  • satellite broadband
  • high-speed product delivery
  • human space travel

Aerospace Objectives

A new space age is dawning, with technological goals worthy of Isaac Asimov's 1970s novel.

The technology goals of the aerospace industry are:

  • development of a global network of communication satellites
  • development of spacecraft with fusion engines
  • development of technologies for the extraction of resources on the Moon and asteroids
  • production of 3D printers to replace worn-out equipment in zero gravity conditions
  • development of gravity tug technologies designed to change the flight path of asteroids in order to prevent their collision with the Earth

When engineer Elisha Otis demonstrated the safe elevator in 1854, the public could not foresee the impact of this device on the subsequent architecture of cities. But after about 20 years, every multi-story building in New York, Boston, and Chicago was built using an elevator. The ordinary elevator made it possible to build skyscrapers.

Today, the development of reusable rockets could be a similar turning point in the technological development of humankind. “We think of reusable rockets as an elevator to orbit,” says Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas. Just as it took elevators to create skyscrapers, so new opportunities in space will open up due to access to orbit and lower launch costs.

Private companies are actively developing technologies for manned lunar landings and launching nanosatellites into orbit from an airplane in order to launch satellites at a much lower cost. This is happening right now. The demand for nanosatellites and reusable launch vehicle systems is expected to grow at an outstripping pace. The satellite market will become the largest category thanks to the procurement of these systems:

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