In the more than forty years since the first human left the atmosphere of Earth, no one had ever done so without the help of a government agency.
That changed on June 21, 2004, when SpaceShipOne, built by aircraft designer Burt Rutan, entered space and ushered in the commercial space age.
Investment capital began to pour into the new commercial spaceflight industry.
Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic will begin ferrying space tourists out of the atmosphere in 2009.
Las Vegas hotelier Robert Bigelow is spending $500 million of his personal fortune to develop the world's first commercial space station (i.e., space hotel).
Former PayPal CEO Elon Musk is developing orbital spacecraft to service Bigelow's space station.
Others want to tap the vast natural resources of space, including unlimited solar power.
For more information about the title Rocketeers: How a Visionary Band of Business Leaders, Engineers, and Pilots Is Boldly Privatizing Space, read the full description at Amazon.com, or see the following related books:
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