Oct. 4, 2014. Free Enterprise
Though space travel used to be dominated solely by the government—and the American and Russian governments, specifically—a growing number of private companies have entered the formerly inaccessible industry over the past decade. Among this new crop of emergent businesses is Deep Space Industries, a space startup whose aim is appropriately out of this world.
While the majority of its peers have thus far set their sights on reducing the cost of space travel, Deep Space is more concerned with what happens after the cost of space travel has been brought down to palatable levels, says David Gump, the company’s vice chair. “What Deep Space is focused on is the next step,” Gump explains.
“The primary goal of Deep Space is to reduce the cost of operating in space,” Gump says. “It costs $17 million per ton to get anything—propellant, etc.—up into high orbit, and that’s the problem we’re trying to solve. It’s fantastically expensive to get supplies, fuel, living quarters, transponders, or anything, really, up to high orbit where you can then put it to work doing communications or remote sensing or any number of things.” …