SpaceVR, the world’s first virtual reality platform with the ability to share live 3D, 360-degree content from the International Space Station (ISS), today announces the launch of its Kickstarter campaign. The project encourages backers to become astronauts by helping to fund Overview One, SpaceVR’s high-definition camera that will be placed on the ISS’s cupola, offering an astronaut’s perspective of the world to consumers.
Rewards for funding the project include a first edition poster of the Earth taken from Overview One, one month of access to the first 3D, virtual reality footage captured by Overview One, a limited-edition Samsung Gear VR mirroring the look of an astronaut helmet and an invitation to a VIP dinner with the SpaceVR team in San Francisco. The public can fund the project on SpaceVR’s Kickstarter page and follow its progress on social media with the hashtag #BeAnAstronaut.
“Most people once dreamed of becoming an astronaut. In reality, only a tiny fraction of humanity has experienced life outside Earth’s atmosphere – just 536 people out of the 12 billion who have ever lived,” said Ryan Holmes, co-founder and CEO of SpaceVR. “Our project gives everyone the opportunity to become an astronaut and to realistically experience seeing the Earth in its entirety – recognizing its preciousness and fragility in our universe. It is our goal to offer this experience to anyone through every virtual reality platform.”
SpaceVR’s design includes the camera mount that will be 3D-printed on the ISS and fitted with a stereoscopic 3D virtual reality camera designed to capture live 360-degree views of its surroundings. The company’s technology will eventually enable live video feeds captured from Overview One to be beamed to SpaceVR subscribers on Earth.
“We want to build a strong community that understands that space exploration is now in our hands. Backers will choose where we go next, be it another spacecraft or a distant planet,” said Isaac DeSouza, co-founder and CTO of SpaceVR.
Once funded, the SpaceVR team will work with its partners, NanoRacks and Made in Space, to handle launch logistics, safety approvals and astronaut relations, and 3D printing, respectively. The company has also secured former astronauts, notable scientists and space entrepreneurs on its board to advise on business and space-related matters.
“When I traveled on the ISS and looked at Earth, my conception of the scale of our planet went from unimaginably large to absolutely finite and in fact, small,” said Richard Garriott, private astronaut, video game designer and SpaceVR board member. “I later learned that this sensation is common among those who have been to space, and is known as the Overview Effect. We would all benefit if we had a shared experience of this kind – I am excited to see SpaceVR launch its Kickstarter project and take the first steps to making this happen.”
The Kickstarter goal of $500,000 includes launch costs and SpaceVR’s first year of operation. The campaign starts on August 10, 2015 and will run for 30 days until September 10, 2015.
Founded in January 2015 by Ryan Holmes, CEO and Isaac DeSouza, CTO, SpaceVR is the world’s first virtual reality platform with the ability to share live 3D, 360 degree content from the International Space Station (ISS). With key partnerships with NanoRacks to handle logistics, safety approvals and astronaut relations, and Made in Space to 3D print the camera mount on the ISS, SpaceVR is positioned to realize its goal of providing an experience that allows billions of people to feel like astronauts. This capability can help catalyze the Overview Effect, an experience of seeing firsthand the reality of Earth in space. In sharing this unique experience beyond the astronaut community, SpaceVR aims to fulfill its mission of uniting humanity in protecting Earth’s fragile environment and working together to resolve conflict.