The appearance of SpaceX and the promise to encourage tourist trips to space meant a major change in the aerospace industry.
This led to the birth of other companies in the same field such as Blue Origin, Virgin Galactic and Ball Aerospace, which develop innovative ships so that space travel is not just for astronauts.
This trend has made space transportation more affordable and routine, which should be accentuated in the coming years.
In this scenario, a report from Visual Capitalist he wonders how much it costs to launch a cargo rocket into space and how much this figure has changed over the years.
One of the graphs shows the cost per kilogram of space launches around the planet starting in 1960, according to data provided by the Center for International Strategic Studies.
According to the infographic, in the 1960s NASA spent $28 billion, which would be about $288 billion adjusted for inflation.
The appearance of new competitors in the space industry has made it possible to lower the associated costs. Thus, for example, the launch of a SpaceX rocket can be 97 percent cheaper than the cost of a trip on a Russian Soyuz in the sixties.
An important part of this saving is due to the use of reusable technology. Rocket boosters from Elon Musk’s company return to Earth in such good condition that they can be used again for another mission.
Either way, space travel is still expensive, an experience reserved for just a few.
In the last 60 years, about 600 people have traveled off-Earth, most of them government astronauts.
Currently, to take a suborbital trip on Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo you have to reserve a seat that costs between $250,000 and $500,000.
For their part, the flights that reach a higher altitude, surpassing the Earth’s orbit, reach a price that can be around $50 million dollars per seat. Something to keep in mind, if we consider that SpaceX’s plan for the future is to put “millions of people in space”.