Successful shuttle launch highlights insurance coverage
California-based Space Exploration Technologies, commonly known as SpaceX, successfully launched its Falcon 9 rocket carrying its Dragon spacecraft into orbit this week. The launch marks the first time a commercial company has made an attempt to send a spacecraft to the International Space Station orbiting the planet. Since the U.S. retired its spacecraft fleet, space exploration has become a commercial province. As such, it has also become an attractive industry for insurers looking to expand their business. SpaceX’s launch, for instance, was not short on insurance coverage.
Coverage for the shuttle expected to be costly
According to Federal Aviation Administration regulations, spacecraft that will be traveling into orbit must be insured for maximum possible loss. SpaceX has attained this coverage, enabling the company to launch its Dragon spacecraft. The company has not revealed which insurance organization provided the coverage, but speculation suggests that the policy covering the spacecraft and its travel brought in a significant profit for the insurance provider.
Space has a lot in common with the sea in terms of insurance coverage
Commercial space travel is an emerging industry now that NASA and the U.S. are not conducting any more space missions. The value of the space travel industry is not yet known, but it will require a fair amount of insurance protection if it is to see success. Currently, space faring is similar to transporting cargo via the sea. SapceX’s Dragon spacecraft was meant to bring over 1,000 pounds of supplies to the International Space Station and bring an equal amount of scientific equipment back to Earth. As with the shipping industry, transporting cargo can be a risky endeavor that could translate into major financial losses in the case of a disaster.
Insurers showing more interest in providing coverage for space travel
More insurance organizations are looking into providing coverage for commercial space flight. This is a relatively new trend that has yet to mature, but insurers believe that the space tourism industry is poised for rapid growth because of the number of private investors that have shown interest in it.