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The Aurora : What will space tourism look like in 2040?

By Tyler Macdonald


What is Space Tourism? Space Tourism is when humans venture past 100km above the earth for recreational purposes. It could be for the view or just the thrill, either way space has captured our imaginations ever since we could look up and ask what is beyond our sky. What has happened in the past 10 years in the rocket industry has been amazing. We now have more private companies sending rockets to space at a rate faster than during the space race between the Soviets and Americans. At the current rate we will see the cost of traveling to space drop to a point where more and more people and companies will be able to afford such a flight. And so... it is only a matter of time before we see space tourism as a new industry. Designing something new like a space ship that has no 'standard'. Thus requiring a lot of research in order to contextualize its possibilities. Is it a HTOL (Horizontal Take Off and Landing) or a VTOL (Vertical Take Off and Landing) or Multistaged or Single Stage Rocket? Seemingly endless possibilities are available. As a result the process to create the final design took on the form of a trdional industrial design process, not one that would be similar to the automotive industry. This isnt a project about perfect surfacing or all the proper lead ins. Its something bigger, the beginning of a new discussion. And so, collaborating was a key factor. One with an interaction designer who researched the before launch senario for such a space flight experience. And the other, an aviation geek who loves cool flying machines and finally an aersopace engineer. All allowing for idea bouncing and expansion on strategy and thoughts. Of course what followed was sketching, mood boarding, 3D, and VR and back and forth discussions that such activites provoke. In order to showcase the experience such a product would provide, a small video was finished alongside the final result. In the end this project resulted in 4 products a: Spaceship Exterior, Interior, Helmet and Spacesuit. All connected to each other (quite literally) and thus leading to a complete experience; a solved design. That design is the Aurora. A HTOL SSTO (Horizontal Take-Off and Land, Single Stage To Orbit) Spaceship for the year 2040. A year that will see the beginning of commercial spaceflight for the masses

Topics: Future Space Tourism Vehicle Design, Design, Design
Publisher: Umeå universitet, Designhögskolan vid Umeå universitet
Year: 2018
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