24/7 Space News
SPACE TRAVEL
Four astronauts splash down after Axiom private mission
ADVERTISEMENT
Four astronauts splash down after Axiom private mission
by AFP Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) Feb 10, 2024

An all-European quartet of astronauts, including Turkey's first, splashed down off the Florida coast on Friday morning, completing Axiom Space's third private mission to the International Space Station.

The Axiom Mission 3 (Ax-3) was the company's first launch where all three paid seats were bought by national agencies rather than wealthy individuals.

A live stream showed a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule named "Freedom" float down on parachutes to the Atlantic Ocean, where it was intercepted and brought aboard a recovery boat.

"I am very proud of my Ax-3 crewmates who helped their agencies achieve all of their science objectives, technology demonstrations and outreach events," Axiom's Chief Astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria, a Spanish and US citizen and former NASA astronaut said in a farewell ceremony before the crew headed back to Earth.

The mission was initially meant to last two weeks, but the return journey was delayed by several days owing to bad weather, resulting in an 18 day stay on the ISS.

Lopez-Alegria was joined by Turkish pilot and air force colonel Alper Gezeravci, Walter Villadei, an Italian air force colonel who had previously flown to the edge of space on a Virgin Galactic space plane, and Marcus Wandt from Sweden, who was also representing the European Space Agency.

Nations with smaller space programs are increasingly turning to the private sector to fulfill their space ambitions, with Turkey in particular hailing the mission as a sign of its growing stature on the world stage.

The crew carried out 30 experiments, learning more about the impact of microgravity on the human body, advancing industrial processes and more.

Axiom Space was founded in 2016 by Michael Suffredini, a former ISS program manager for NASA, and entrepreneur Kam Ghaffarian.

In addition to organizing private missions to the orbital outpost, the company is developing spacesuits for future NASA missions to the Moon.

It is also building a commercial space station that it intends to initially attach to the ISS, then separate and orbit independently sometime before the ISS is retired.

The exact costs of the Ax-3 have not been disclosed, but in 2018 when the company first announced the program, which involves chartering SpaceX hardware and paying NASA for services, it set a price tag of $55 million per seat.

More recently, Hungary was reported by spacenews.com to be planning a $100 million deal with Axiom for a future mission involving one astronaut.

Britain, which is striving to build a post-Brexit space strategy, has also signed an agreement for a future mission carrying UK astronauts.

Related Links
Space Tourism, Space Transport and Space Exploration News

Subscribe Free To Our Daily Newsletters

RELATED CONTENT
The following news reports may link to other Space Media Network websites.
SPACE TRAVEL
NASA's latest experiments aboard ISS aim to boost life in space
Los Angeles CA (SPX) Feb 01, 2024
NASA's Biological and Physical Sciences Division is embarking on a new journey to enhance life beyond Earth with the launch of three pivotal experiments to the International Space Station (ISS). These experiments, part of Northrop Grumman's 20th commercial resupply services mission, are set to pioneer scientific discovery in the realms of physical sciences and space biology, paving the way for sustainable deep space exploration and transformative engineering. The launch is earmarked for no earlier than ... read more

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
SPACE TRAVEL
Space Beach Law Lab: Shaping the Future of Space Law at Queen Mary Conference

Third NASA Enabled Private Flight to Space Station Completes Safely

Axiom 3 astronauts undock from ISS for trip back to Earth

Four astronauts splash down after Axiom private mission

SPACE TRAVEL
SpaceX Expands Global Internet Coverage with 22 New Starlink Satellites

Dream Chaser Spaceplane Undergoes Extreme Testing at NASA's Armstrong Facility

New Satellite Launch Marks a Milestone in China's Commercial Space Sector

Following repeated delays, NASA launches new PACE Earth-observing satellite

SPACE TRAVEL
Ripple Me This: Sols 4089-4090

Lake deposits in Idaho give scientists insight into ancient traces of life on Mars

Confirmation of ancient lake on Mars builds excitement for Perseverance rover's samples

NASA helicopter's mission ends after three years on Mars

SPACE TRAVEL
Space Pioneer and LandSpace Lead China's Private Sector to New Heights in Space

BIT advances microbiological research on Chinese Space Station

Shenzhou 18 and 19 crews undertake intensive training for next missions

Tianzhou 6 burns up safely reentering Earth

SPACE TRAVEL
Rocket Lab Boosts Capital with $355 Million in Convertible Senior Notes Amid Growth Plans

Signal Ocean to make $10M strategic investment in Spire Global

Terran Orbital announces agreement with Shareholder Group

Geespace achieves milestone in satellite constellation development for future mobility

SPACE TRAVEL
MXene-coated Devices Can Guide Microwaves in Space and Lighten Payloads

New Data Prep Tool from Spatial to Streamline CAD Workflows

DLR develops mobile station for Satellite Laser Ranging

Spaceborne Computer-2 sets new benchmark for AI and ML on ISS

SPACE TRAVEL
Migration solves exoplanet puzzle

Carbon Monoxide Dynamics Offer New Insights into Exoplanet Habitability

UC Irvine-led team unravels mysteries of planet formation and evolution in distant solar system

NASA's Hubble Finds Water Vapor in Small Exoplanet's Atmosphere

SPACE TRAVEL
NASA invites public to dive into Juno's Spectacular Images of Io

Europa Clipper gears up with full instrument suite onboard

New images reveal what Neptune and Uranus really look like

Researchers reveal true colors of Neptune, Uranus

Subscribe Free To Our Daily Newsletters


ADVERTISEMENT



The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2023 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Statement Our advertisers use various cookies and the like to deliver the best ad banner available at one time. All network advertising suppliers have GDPR policies (Legitimate Interest) that conform with EU regulations for data collection. By using our websites you consent to cookie based advertising. If you do not agree with this then you must stop using the websites from May 25, 2018. Privacy Statement. Additional information can be found here at About Us.