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64Isea&iIWINTER 2011HIGH EXPECTATIONSSpace travel has traditionally been the preserve of moviesand schoolboy dreams; a fantastical journey into theunknown, a noble mission to explore where few humanshave ever been, and the surreal experience of being able to lookdown through a starry sky and see the softly illuminated curveof the Earth far beneath you. For those who love adventure,there is no comparison, and now, for the first time in history,there is no need to simply dream or flick 'play' on the DVD - space travel for the everyday adventurer has finally launched. The company paving the way in offering private trips is SpaceAdventures, based in Virginia, US. Founded in 1998, the companyhas long worked with professional astronauts and cosmonautsin the US and Russia to deliver the safest, most excitingThe earth may be well-trod terrain, but the sea and sky offer infinite possibilitiesfor intrepid discovery. sea&iexplores options on a spaceship, a superyachtand a submersible to bring you the most exceptional travel experiences ByKate RigbyUltimate travel sea and space

WINTER 2011I sea&iI65adventures possible. It is currently the only company providingspaceflights for self-funded individuals and, to date, its clients,cumulatively, have travelled 36 million miles and spent overthree months aboard the International Space Station - a multi-billion dollar research laboratory that was developed over thelast ten years through a broad international partnership ofspace agencies, and which orbits 400 kilometres (250 miles)above the Earth's surface. Tom Shelley, president of Space Adventures says, "Over thenext decade Space Adventures will arrange flights to space formore people than have made the journey since the dawn of theSpace Age. Our clients will fly on suborbital flights,on voyages to Earth orbit, and on historic expeditions thatcircumnavigate the moon. Flights will leave from spaceportsboth on Earth and in space, visiting private space stations, andaboard dozens of different vehicles."With its focus firmly on the future, Space Adventures is, inthe meantime, offering various levels of experience right now.Depending how high your ambition soars, and how deep yourbank balance can delve, you can weigh in for a zero-gravity flight,launch off on an orbital spaceflight, or strap yourself in for theultimate voyage of a lifetime aboard a circumlunar mission.WORTH THE WEIGHTThe 'entry-level' experience is a zero-gravity flight called theZero-G Experience. Starting at $4,950 per person and scalingup to $165,000 for a plane charter of up to 35 passengers, thisis a remarkable opportunity to experience true weightlessnessaboard a modified Boeing 727. As the plane completes a seriesof up to 15 parabolas, passengers are swept off their feet,literally,for 20 to 30 seconds of weightlessness per parabolain which they flip, soar and somersault mid air. If you've set your sights on a more intense experience,suborbital spaceflight will give you the opportunity to fly 100kilometres (62 miles) high, from where you can look down ontoEarth. Travelling ten times higher than the altitude reached bya commercial aircraft, you'll be a genuine space traveller. Fromthe thrill of striding to the launch pad to getting strapped in toyour seat, to feeling the engines fire up as you take off, thiswill be pure-adrenalin travel. Once in space, you will be ableto gaze for hundreds of miles and see the outline of the Earthas you go where few have ever travelled. "With prices startingat $102,000, this is an increasingly realistic choice," saysShelley. "This spaceflight option is currently under developmentbut we already have over 200 reservations, including?Clockwise from far left:Earth as seen from the moon; the Soyuzspacecraft blasting off;Star City's centrifuge; the Zero-G Experiencefurtherafield