AXIOM MISSION 1 (AX 1):
A former Israeli fighter pilot, an American technology entrepreneur, and a Canadian investor will be part of the crew of the first entirely-private orbital space mission.
- The three men are paying $55 million each to fly aboard a SpaceX rocket for an eight-day visit to the International Space Station, organized by Houston-based spaceflight firm Axiom.
- The Axiom Mission 1 (AX 1) flight is being arranged under a commercial agreement with NASA.
- The mission will be led by former NASA astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria, who now works for Axiom space.
- While private citizens have traveled to space before, the AX 1 mission will be the first to use a commercially built spacecraft, the SpaceX Dragon 2, best known for flying its first two crews to the ISS late last year.
- Private civilians have travelled to the space station beforealso.
- Since 2001, Russia has been selling rides to the ISS to wealthy businessmen around the world.
- They traveled onboard the Russian Soyuz aircraft along with professional cosmonauts and NASA astronauts.