ZURICH (Reuters) - A Swiss aerospace group plans to offer zero-gravity flights this year in an airliner that will expose thrill-seekers with strong stomachs to repeated bouts of weightlessness.
In what it called a world premiere, Swiss Space Systems (S3) said on Tuesday it had bought an Airbus A340-300 jet that will carry around 70 passengers on 90-minute flights featuring 15 parabolic arcs. Each parabola will generate 20 to 25 seconds of weightlessness as passengers pass through the top of the arc.
“Our ultimate vision is to democratize access to space through our reusable launcher program. Well before our launcher becomes a reality, the ZeroG experience onboard our Airbus aircraft will offer everyone an opportunity to become an astronaut for a day,” S3 Chief Executive Pascal Jaussi said.
Prices range from 2,700 Swiss francs ($2,826) for a seat in the “party zone” with up to 40 passengers to as high as 65,000 francs for the VIP Room, which will hold up to 12 passengers, who will also get a luxury watch and can keep their flight suit.
The aircraft will also provide a platform for high-precision microgravity experiments, the company said.
Reporting by Michael Shields, editing by Larry King