Commercial circumlunar flight go in 2015?

Eric Anderson, chairman of Space Adventures, speaking at the Digital – Life – Design (DLD) conference in Munich, Germany Sunday afternoon, announced his Virginia-based firm had sold one of two contract tickets to fly a Soyuz spacecraft around the Moon for $150-million.

Anderson declined to name the person who had purchased the $150-million one of the two seats for a circumlunar flight planned for 2015. “When we tell you, you’ll know who it is. You’ll recognize the name.” As to the second $150-million seat, “we’ve got people we’re finalizing with right now.”

The plan has been to sell two commercial tickets to fly a Soyuz spacecraft on an Apollo 8-like flight from the Earth and go around the Moon and return to Earth on a one-half million mile journey.

Working with Russia, Space Adventures has launched eight private citizens into space over the past decade. The decade old business firm is also marketing an opportunity to be the first civilian to walk in space and three seats to fly a Soyuz booster and capsule to the International Space Station beginning again in 2013.

Space Adventures has also partnered with Boeing to sell passenger seats for future flights on its new crew capsule, CST-100, currently in development. The firm is now also marketing suborbital spaceflights with Armadillo Aerospace.

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