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Genesis I space station marks fifth anniversary in orbit

Written by Subject: Space Travel and Exploration
Congratulations Bigelow Aerospace!!!!

It was July 12, 2006 when Bigelow Aerospace had the space watching community take notice by successfully sending the first privately funded and constructed space station into orbit aboard an old decommissioned Russian ICBM.  Genesis I has pleased their developers by wildly exceeding expectations in its efficiency, structural integrity and survivability (real time tracking) in space.

Because of the success of the first two orbiting space stations  (real time tracking of Genesis II) it abandoned plans for a third bigger unmanned orbital test station Galaxy, and Bigelow Aerospace has apparently now abandoned its plan for a medium sized manned test station (the Sundancer) and is going to its full blown major module, the BA330 (330 cubic meters interior volume; for comparison the ISS has 837 cubic meters internal volume and took 15 years to construct in space) module production...which apparently will be its first manned test station as well.

This is the announcement on their website: Due to customer demand and progress in commercial crew transportation, Bigelow Aerospace has moved directly to BA 330 development. As the name indicates, the BA 330 will provide roughly 330 cubic meters of usable volume and can support a crew of up to six. The BA 330 can function as an independent space station, or several BA 330s can be combined to support an even larger orbital complex.  "It's extremely exciting to proceed with the actual construction of BA 330s," said Robert T. Bigelow, President and founder of Bigelow Aerospace,  "This robust habitat will serve as the backbone for a new, dynamic era of commercial human spaceflight. The BA 330 will support a wide variety of utilization and exploration missions both in Low Earth Orbit and beyond."

And the link to the Sundancer orbital module has been removed.  Smart move considering NASA has now sucked up all of the Falcon 9 launch vehicles to resupply their ISS space station forcing Bigelow's first scheduled launch back two years to sometime in 2014.  [We are going to space and government is just getting in the way.]

And just in case 330 cubic meters isn't big enough for you, they announced the BA 2100, a 2,100 cubic meter version for interplanetary exploration.  They built the resources, so who has the commercial ideas for profits in micro-gravity?  Who is stepping up to the plate?

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