Let the Age of Private Space Exploration Begin

NASA

This morning, the SpaceX spacecraft named “Dragon” was officially captured by the robotic arm of the International Space Station. In terms of spaceflight, this is a big deal as SpaceX is the first ever private company to launch a rocket, detach a module, and dock with space station. The pending success of this mission will determine whether the United States government will proceed with a $1.2 billion contract with SpaceX for 12 future payload missions. However, I believe this it truly the beginning of something amazing. In the 1960’s, the world witnessed a “space race” between two countries that wanted to blow each other up. In just 10 years, we went from being able to launch a rocket into orbit to being able to land on the moon. Now we have half a dozen private companies that are competing for the same thing, cheaper and faster than any government could. Who knows, maybe in 10 years SpaceX will be preparing for human spaceflight to Mars.