The tension is rising – Waldviertler All-Tourist starts today!


He had to be patient for 17 years, and this Friday evening the time has finally come: Lower Austrian Franz Haider (61) will go into space together with three other space tourists. The tour operator is British billionaire Richard Branson’s private space company Virgin Galactic. Haider paid $200,000 (about 184,000 euros) for the two and a half hour flight – including three to seven minutes of weightlessness.

The entrepreneur from Sallingberg (Lower Austria) is listed as “Astronaut 025”. According to the company, he is one of the first passengers to make a commercial flight after a long development period, first with the aircraft carrier “VMS Eve” to an altitude of about 15 kilometers and from there with the spaceship “VSS Unity”, which looks like a private jet at about 90 kilometers altitude. According to the definition of the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), this is sufficient to be classified as an ‘astronaut’.

Sensation and weightlessness
After uncoupling from the ‘mother ship’, the slightly more than 18 meter long ‘VSS Unity’ accelerates in an almost vertical climb to 3,600 kilometers per hour. During this maneuver, weightlessness is achieved before the summit, over which the vehicle passes upside down. The crew can then release their harnesses and float freely in the cabin for a while. Upon re-entering the atmosphere, the crew must then withstand g-forces (gravitational acceleration) that can reach up to six times their body weight.

He “always expected me to fly,” Haider told the APA ahead of the flight, which cost him about 184,000 euros. Nowadays, interested parties have to pay twice as much for it.

First commercial flight last year
Virgin Galactic was only able to start taking tourists to space in July last year, with further commercial flights following almost every month. At the end of 2018, the ‘VSS Unity’ managed to go into space for the first time and in 2021 a team with company founder Branson on board was able to complete the flight. This was preceded by many years of development work and many setbacks.

Source: Krone


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Share post:



More like this