Upstream is by far the sexist and most macho of all the pillars of The Space Economy. As a result, it is no shock that it is the least profitable. For the last 80 years, since the end of World War II, the majority of Space investment has gone into Upstream businesses and initiatives. Upstream investments can also be categorized as Up and Out investments.
Instream is where the future of TSE gets interesting. Why Instream is interesting isn’t due to satellites and the vast amounts of revenue that they will generate from geospatial data. Rather, why Instream is poised to outperform Downstream is because of the role that Space Stations will play in the future of Humanity’s quest for immortality. As the International Space Station (ISS) reaches towards its third decade of service, private companies such as Sierra Space, Orbital Assembly, Orbital Reef and Nanoracks have stepped up to provide the next generation of space stations. The next generation of space stations will be less The Behemoth in the Slow Zone and more Deep Space Nine inspired orbital business parks. Specifically, orbital research platforms where the secrets to immortality are pursued and cracked in microgravity. MilkyWayEconomy predicts that the Milky Way’s first quadrillionaire will be an Indian woman, who specializes in genetics, whose research performed on one of these space stations not only renders Humans all but immortal but also makes her this galaxy’s first Quadrillionaire. Based on the current status of both genetic research and space station development, we anticipate this to occur in 2065. Making Instream one of the most valuable vertical in TSE.
Downstream- As of January 2023 the global market for geospatial data is $17B dollars, accounting for 3.3% of the total $503B dollar TSE. By the year 2040 the geospatial data market will be worth just north of $200B dollars. The
geospatial data market is just one aspect of the Downstream data market and value chain that TSE creates. Afterall, in Space, data is the currency of space. From machine-to-machine micropayments for in orbit satellite services, parking spaces and premium orbits, data and the exchange thereof, will define the currency of TSE and even the Cislunar and Martian economy.
Exploration is the second easiest aspect of TSE to understand and appreciate. Ever since the first human walked out of Africa, Humanity has looked up to the heavens and wondered what lay beyond our imagination. Exploration will be a driving force to TSE, especially as many of the environmental and physiological challenges to space travel (e.g.: radiation and muscle atrophy) are overcome over the next 100 years. Propelled by the discovery of immortality via microgravity bioresearch in 2065, Humanity will look at the night’s sky as Polynisians did to the horizons of the Pacific. The key difference in exploration, post immortality unlocking, is that Space exploration will become the primary domain of women.
Religion's Role in The Space Economy - every great age of expansion or explorationin Human history has been driven by either Glory, Gold or God. When all three align, history changes paradigms. In TSE religion and faith play no less critical role. As to unlock the true discoveries of Space and microgravity savvy Founders and Spacepreneurs will tie their technology and scientific discoveries to prove the following, which unlock the funding purse strings politicians and governments around the world have:
- Do aliens exist?
- Proof that god exist
While many in the scientific community believe in research for the sakeof research, in the savvy mind of a Founder looking for unlimited funding, addressing these two factors is what will unlock the governmental pursue
strings required to fund the research which changes humanity as a species.
About the Authors
George S. Pullen and Samson Williams are founders of Milky Way Economy, a Washington, DC based think tank who specialize in understanding the economic foundations of the Fifth Industrial Revolution and the Space Economy. In addition to writing, researching and being investors in 5th Industrial Revolution companies, Samson and George are adjunct professors at the University of New Hampshire School of Law and instructors at Columbia University in NYC. Additionally, George is a Marine (former) and guest lecturer at the National Defense University.