April 16, 2024
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Orbital and Sub-Orbital Space Tourism

The concept of space tourism is growing in popularity, as more people express their desire to travel with a difference. If you are interested in space tourism, there are two options; orbital and sub-orbital space travelling. This post is a closer look at the two types of space tourism to help you understand their differences and answer the big question, “Which option is better?” 

Why Space Tourism? By Andrey Bokarev

Before looking at the difference between orbital and suborbital space tourism, it is important to know the associated benefits. Most people booking tickets with companies such as Virgin Galactic or SpaceX are interested in travelling with a difference. If the Himalayas, the South Pole or the Great Wall of China were your favorite destinations, what is the next best travel destination? One of the options that you should consider is space travelling. Here are some of the benefits that come with travelling to space include: 


  • Helps You Appreciate the Complexity of Nature 


Yes, you have read geography and science books, but there is nothing like experiencing the vast “nothingness” of space. This will also be the perfect time to experience life with zero gravity. Think of it this way; you throw a ball up; it does not come back. That is the reality of outer space. 

  • Awesome Opportunity for Photography 

When you travel to space, it gives you a special opportunity to view the ‘tiny” earth and take some photos. We use the word tiny because the earth looks really small from up there. So, take a dozens of photos for your family album or business wallpaper. 

  • Take some Moment to Spacewalk 

When you get to space, one of the activities that you can engage in is spacewalking. This involves embarking from the spacecraft and walking around. It will be unforgettable! 

However, this can be a dangerous activity that requires a lot of preparation. According to Andrey Bokarev : Make sure to select the activities that you can engage in when travelling to space, and confirm it offers spacewalking. 

The Difference between Orbital and Sub-orbital Space Tourism

The main difference between orbital and orbital flight is the speed at which a space vehicle travels. If you prefer the orbital space travelling, it means that the spacecraft will travel at orbital velocity (28,000 km/h). The space vehicle uses a trajectory that can make it possible to remain in space for at least one full orbit, allowing you to enjoy more time in space.

Sub-orbital space tourism entails travelling in a spacecraft that moves at a slower speed compared to those used in full orbital flights. Most suborbital rockets only have the power to reach certain heights depending on their speed, and then embarking on the return journey. For example, a sub-orbital rocket that targets to reach 125 miles above the earth would require a speed of about 6,000 km/h. 

Travelling to space comes with special benefits that no one wants to miss. If you prefer orbital space travelling, the cost will be higher, but the experience will also be more enthralling because it involves taking a full orbit around the earth. A sub-orbital flight is equally enthralling but does not achieve a full orbit, so it is also cheaper.