It’s been one of the most intriguing on-the-books-but-never-executed space missions of the 21st century: two tourists paying $150 million each would fly around the moon in a modified Russian Soyuz spacecraft before landing back on Earth. It would be humanity’s first trip to the moon since Apollo 17, which landed there 45 years ago this month.
Space Adventures said it had signed two wealthy tourists to go years ago. There was much speculation about the identities of these individuals. Was it Google Founder Sergey Brin? Titanic director James Cameron? Brin and Cameron? Cameron and a seat full of camera equipment?
The answer is none of the above. One prospective lunar tourist is someone few people have ever heard of. The other is a well known figure in the space community who was hiding in plain sight. The reason they didn’t fly to the moon together might surprise you.
On Tuesday, March 8, 2011, the TEDxMidTownNY headline speaker will be Tom Shelley, Vice President of Space Adventures, Ltd., the only company providing human space missions to the world marketplace. He will provide an â€œOverview of the Human Spaceflight Training Market.â€ Tom will share his insights and discuss developments in commercial space transportation and other related industries.
The second speaker for this event will be Noah Zerkin, Research Engineer in the Neurology Department at the Human Aerospace Lab at Mount Sinai Medical Center. Noah designs and fabricates prototype sensor modules for automated mobile neurovestibular evaluation of human subjects who have spent extended periods in microgravity (i.e. at the International Space Station). Noah is also the inventor and developer of the Zerkin Glove, a low cost glove for interacting with virtual objects in an augmented environment, and the author of Augmentation featuring his views on the coming AR revolution.