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Cosmos dreams

05/10/2005. Contributed by Jessica Martin

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Dreamed of going into space? Now you can. The October 2005 issue of Cosmos, Australia''s glossy science magazine, looks at the coming age of holidays in space: where to go, what to do, and what it will cost.

Once a thing only governments with billion-dollar budgets could do, space is now becoming the high frontier of tourism. Almost 100 people have signed up for the first few flights, due in 2008, plonking down the US$200,000 cost of the flight.

Among the first Australians to buy a ticket is Dr Alan Finkel of Melbourne: the successful scientist and entrepreneur who is also co-founder of Cosmos magazine and Chairman of its publishing company, Luna Media. Another is Wilson da Silva, the editor of Cosmos magazine.

There are even plans for tourist flights to the Moon. In the 8-page Cosmos cover story, we talk to all of the major players - including Richard Branson''s fledgling Virgin Galactic space airline. Get ready for blast off with Cosmos!


TYRANNOSAURUS SEX: They dominated the Earth for 150 million years, but we know little about how they reproduced. Now, a band of intrepid scientists is trying to find out.

THE ART OF SERENDIPITY: Great discoveries require determination, a creative mind, attention to detail - and sheer blind luck. Bestselling science author Simon Singh tells the stories behind of some of the best examples of serendipity in science.

OCEANS OF NOISE: Marine creatures use sound to hunt prey and communicate over long distances. But as the seas become crowded with the throb of mighty engines, high-frequency sonar and seismic tests, scientists suspect marine life is being dramatically affected; it may even be causing whale strandings.

LED THERE BE LIGHT: After centuries of reliable use, the electric light bulb is about to be retired - by LEDs. This simple change would have dramatic consequences: LEDs are much more efficient, and would save billions of dollars (and tonnes of greenhouse gases), reducing the need to build scores of new power stations.

Includes an original SF short story from Paul Di Filippo, "Daydream Nation".

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