Bigelow Aerospace has a dream to create hotels in space using inflatable, expandable modules. Awarded a $17.8 million contract by NASA this week, Bigelow, owned by Robert Bigelow of Budget Suites of America, plans to launch an inflatable module into space where it will remain for two years and serve as a storage module attached to the ISS. A news conference is planned for January 16 at Bigelow's headquarters in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Bigelow, featured in past articles, has worked with the Russian space program for several years and previously launched two inflatables, Genesis 1 and 2. The former went into space in 2006. The latter in 2007. Both remain in orbit.
In the two images below on the left is a full-scale Bigelow module, and on the right the ISS with module attached. The current contract would be for a smaller inflatable than what is displayed here but Bigelow's goal is to send modules with greatly expanded living space into orbit and eventually the Moon to serve as human habitations.
In the NASA media advisory it refers to a Bigelow Expandable Activity Module. We will know a lot more about what exactly is planned on this coming Wednesday. The conference is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Eastern Standard Time.
Essays and comments posted in World Future Society and THE FUTURIST magazine blog portion of this site are the intellectual property of the authors, who retain full responsibility for and rights to their content. For permission to publish, distribute copies, use excerpts, etc., please contact the author. The opinions expressed are those of the author. The World Future Society takes no stand on what the future will or should be like.
KEEP UP WITH WFS NEWS & UPCOMING EVENTS
August 1, 2015 - The Monsanto patent on Roundup Ready Soybeans has expired after 20 years. That means farmers can now legally collect the seeds from their plantings and use them to replant or even sell to other farmers.
U.S. Study Shows Oil Sands Produce 20% More Carbon Than Conventional Crude Heating Up Keystone XL Debate
July 31, 2015 - Today United States crude production includes 9% contribution from Canadian oil sands. By 2020 that number is expected to climb to 14%. This estimate is independent of whether the northern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline gets built or not. So the United States has much invested in Canadian oil sands production and as a result the U.S.
July 30, 2015 - One of my readers who follows my blog through LinkedIn admonished me a couple of weeks ago for being too critical of the fossil fuel industry.
July 28, 2015 - If you are a regular reader of this blog then you have read about the importance of our research into stem cells and their therapeutic value. I'm even contemplating having my stem cells harvested to inject into my osteoarthritic left knee to help restore the cartilage I have lost over the years.
July 26, 2015 - Three farm stories caught my eye this week. The first, a truly revolutionary one that pushes back the dawn of the age of agriculture some 11,000 years. The second, a GMO story featuring a new rice that produces less greenhouse gas. And the third, a Harvard study about declining zinc levels in food because of rising carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere.
July 25, 2015 - Space has been big in the news in the last week. From the latest Pluto images to the discovery of a potential Earth-twin exoplanet, to new observations about the bright spots on the dwarf planet/asteroid Ceres, to Curiosity's latest findings.
July 23, 2015 - Sea ice volume is a different measure than sea ice extent. Volume looks at the thickness of the ice as well as the area of coverage. Extent is just about the latter. When the European Space Agency (ESA) launched CryoSat-2 in 2010, scientists for the first time were able to gauge volume and in the first two years of observation it was in decline.