(Photo : Wikimedia Commons)
As more and more private space companies announce their plans to run commercial flights to the moon, a new contender with some heavyweights behind the wheel has just announced its plans to take humans to the moon for $1.5 billion a trip.
Golden Spike Company's President and CEO Dr. Alan Stern and Chairman of the Board Gerry Griffin said today, Dec. 6, that each seat on the two-seater lunar module will cost $750 million. The price of the mission approximately equals the cost of an unmanned robotic missions.
"We're selling to nations, corporations and individuals," Stern told SPACE.com. "Get in line -- and I think it's going to be a long one."
While some skeptics are critical of Golden Spike Company's ability to financially back its venture, both Dr. Alan Stern and Gerry Griffin have illustrious careers that might help kickstart the project. Dr. Alan Stern is an ex-NASA leader of space missions, and Gerry Griffin was a Flight Director for the Apollo Missions.
Golden Spike Company hopes to design its own spacesuits to allow the passengers to actually set foot on the moon.
In an interview with Forbes, Dr. Stern stressed that the business plan is still far from completion.
"We're a startup and we've been at this for two years," Stern told Forbes. "But we don't have anything built yet but an interesting business plan."
To speed up progress, Golden Spike Company will be focusing on utilizing existing technologies rather than try to develop new technology.
"Instead of saying, 'what would we design with a clean sheet of paper?', we asked, 'what's existing today that could work?' We came up with a maximally built plan based on - stuff that's already built and operating. It's only when something doesn't exist that we plan to build from scratch," Stern continued to Forbes.
While setting foot on the moon may sound amazing, do you think its worth shelling out $750 million?
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Visit Golden Spike Company's official website for more information.