Virgin will reach space in 'weeks, not months', says founder Branson

Virgin will reach space in 'weeks, not months', says founder Branson

And then we will be in space with myself in months and not years.

"He's a wonderfully creative person but he shouldn't be getting very little sleep", Branson said.

Richard Branson told Elon Musk that he needs to delegate more to improve his quality of life outside of Tesla.

To reach the Karman line, a spaceship has to cruise at an altitude of 100 kilometers above sea level.

While Sir Richard says that he will have humans in space next year, Mr Musk has set a target of 2030 to get people to Mars, with the first people there being tasked with beginning to build a new civilisation. Then, in 2016, the VSS Unity, which replaced the VSS Enterprise, completed its first glide test with flying colors and completed a few more powered flight tests in April and May.

"Ultimately", Branson said he hoped the price of a space flight would come down to around $40,000 or $50,000 over the next decade".

To prepare for his maiden voyage, Branson, 67, said, he's been training rigorously: cycling, playing tennis and spending time in a centrifuge to acquaint his body with the gravitational forces of space.

Virgin Galactic has conducted three manned test flights in the Earth's atmosphere this year, after a hiatus to recover from a fatal accident in 2014. From early next year, passengers will be able to identify as having feelings of travel-related anxiety before they fly, leading to personalised communications in the lead up to their journey, and face to dace interactions while onboard the aircraft.

"Out of ten people in the room, eight would go into space if I could afford it", - said the billionaire.

Branson's estimation puts the Virgin Galactic project not far behind its initial deadline.

"We should be in space within weeks, not months". The company expects its New Shepard suborbital vehicle to carry the first space tourists into orbit in 2019.

"Taking care of the mental health of staff, customers, and even the wider community should be a priority for any business", Branson said.

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has Blue Origin, and he is pumping in US$1 billion of his Amazon stock into the venture every year with the aim of launching a crewed mission next year.