Alex Tai is the VP of Operations for Virgin Galactic, Richard Branson's effort to commercialize space travel
MP3 File | Transcript
Virgin Galactic is Richard Branson's effort to bring space travel to the masses (well, at least those masses that can fork over $200k for a ticket). I spoke with Alex Tai in London at the Virgin Galactic headquarters. Alex, an experienced pilot and personal friend of Branson's, is responsible for figuring out how to put space tourists in zero gravity in a safe flight.
Virgin is working with Burt Rutan (click here to hear Burt talk about space flight), winner of the Ansari X-prize to build Spaceship Two to make multiple flights into space per day. Check out this amazing animation of what it will be like to be on the space flight:
If you want to hear Richard Branson narrating a 10-minute promotional video of Virgin Galactic, including some original footage of Rutan's winning X-prize design, click here.
In this interview, Alex talks about the challenges and promises of space tourism and how this fits in to Virgin´s long-term vision of long-haul travel. Also, he talks about the long-term vision for space travel (1.5 hour roundtrip between London and Sydney anyone?) and responds to Heidi Roizen's question about how Galactic fits into Virgin's portfolio. The Gadling travel blog has a useful post on the topic.
Click here to see a video of Alex talking about the long term vision for Virgin Galactic and space travel. And check out the video below to see Alex's response to Heidi Roizen's question about where Galactic fits in Virgin's overall plans:
On our next episode Matt interviews Geoffrey Moore, VC and author of "Crossing the Chasm" and "Dealing With Darwin", so make sure to subscribe and tune in!