Using private money to recreate Glenn’s flight

Wednesday’s Huntsville Times describes something that sounds at least mildly quixotic: an effort to recreate John Glenn’s historic 1962 spaceflight on the 50th anniversary, using private funding. The project is the brainchild of retired pilot Craig Russell, who has created a nonprofit organization to raise the money needed to refurbish a Mercury capsule and launch it with an astronaut on board. Russell estimates he need to raise $35 million for a Falcon 9 launch, but thinks that either refurbishing an unflown Mercury capsule or building one from scratch could be done for as little as $10 million because all the R&D needed to build the capsule was done decades ago (also, apparently, student labor would be involved.)

Russell is trying to raise money for the project now, but said he would abandon the project if he can’t raise “significant interest and funding” during the course of this year. NASA doesn’t appear to be interested: Russell met with an unnamed NASA associate administrator last June to brief him on the effort but did not get a positive response. “He was not very enthusiastic,” Russell said.

6 comments to Using private money to recreate Glenn’s flight

Leave a Reply




You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>