Thursday, 24 May 2012

Spaceport Singapore

Space Adventures has proposed a USD $115 million spaceport to be located in Singapore, near Singapore Changi Airport. This spaceport will service the Space Adventures Explorer suborbital tourist rocketplane. It will also provide astronaut training facilities and a public education and interactive visitor center. The spaceport is licensed by the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS). The estimated completion date of the spaceport in 2009.
Sites in Australia, the Bahamas, Florida, Japan, Malaysia, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Singapore and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates were considered. After a year-long selection process, the sites in Singapore and Dubai were chosen. One key difference between the two proposed spaceports is that while the Dubai spaceport will be mainly a launchpad for sub-orbital space flights, the Singapore spaceport will have much more facilities.
The planned attractions in the Singapore Spaceport are:
  • Sub-orbital Space Flights that will blast passengers to an altitude of 100 km so they can enjoy about five minutes of weightlessness. An entire flight will take about 90 minutes. There will be a four-day training programme before the flight. The entire experience is estimated to cost US$102,000.
  • Parabolic Flights. These flights at an estimated US$10,000 produce the experience of weightlessness in an aircraft without going into space.
  • Flights in the Aero L-39 Albatros, a high-performance jet trainer aircraft.
  • A four-day space camp for children.
  • For adults, a full-day astronaut experience that will include a spin in a centrifuge to simulate a high-gravity environment, astronaut meals and a stint in a hypobaric (low-pressure) chamber to simulate performing repairs on damaged spacecraft in orbit.
  • An authentic VIP astronaut training facility for the public that will provide many of the training elements used by professional astronauts. These include simulated spacewalks in neutral buoyancy tanks on the ground. Courses will be taught by actual astronauts and other space, flight, and training experts.
  • An Interactive Visitor Centre, where the public can enjoy flight simulators and interactive exhibit experiences, or learn about the history and technology of space travel.
The entire complex will be spread over 17,000 square meters of floor area on a 1.8 ha site. It is expected to generate about $3 billion in economic benefits over 10 years. It hopes to attract more than half-a-million visitors a year from the region within two-and-a-half years of opening.
The estimated minimum cost of US$115 million will be partially funded by the private sector, undisclosed Singapore sources, as well Space Adventures' global spaceport development partner, His Highness Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Crown Prince of Ras Al-Khaimah in the United Arab Emirates.
The consortium supporting Spaceport Singapore includes Octtane Pte, Batey Pte Ltd., Lyon Capital Inc., DP Architects, ST Medical and KPMG Corporate Finance.

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