Experts Consider Potential For First “Space Trillionaire” Written 15 May 2018

Aerospace America reported on discussions at last week’s Humans to Mars Summit in Washington, DC centered on space entrepreneurship. During the event, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) said, “I believe the first trillionaire will be made in space.” While attendees and presenters “seemed optimistic about growth” of the space industry, some were “less sure about Cruz’s trillionaire prediction.” Star Century Partners founding partner Rick Tumlinson estimated that initial Mars exploration efforts will not be overly profitable due to the planet’s distance from Earth. Low gravity manufacturing, Tumlinson pointed out, could be carried out on the lunar surface or a space station much closer to Earth. He also said, “As far as I’ve seen there is no business plan that (addresses) being able to go to Mars and do something of financial value.” Explore Mars co-founder Chris Carberry sees the “immediate incentive to visit Mars” as exploration versus profit, and suggests that “we don’t quite see what the market would be for Mars, but it’s the inspirational driver, the science driver, the future-of-humanity driver.” Still, Carberry believes that there “will be a space trillionaire, it’s just a matter of whether someone gets there first making money the traditional way on Earth.”
Full Story (Aerospace America, by Tom Risen)