The search for extraterrestrial life has been a dominant theme of both science fiction and astronomy for decades now. “Are we alone?” remains one of the burning questions of humanity, one that, depressingly, we may never answer. Aliens may be extinct, hiding from us, trapped by their own planets’ immense gravity, or maybe they don’t exist in the first place.
Wouldn’t that be the biggest bummer of all? In order to avoid the horrible realization that we may be the only living things stinking up the cosmos, one Netherlands-based company plans to take matters into their own hands by breeding bona fide extraterrestrials all on their own - extraterrestrial humans, that is.
SpaceLife Origin hails themselves as the world’s first “bio-tech & mission development company,” meaning their interests lie in developing both specialized medical equipment and then sending that equipment to space. According to their website, the company’s ultimate goal is to “make embryo conception in space feasible by 2021 and enable real human birth in space by 2024.”
Like many other tech visionaries, SpaceLife Origin Founder and CEO Kees Mulder says that his company wants to enable humanity to break the chains holding us onto this dying planet and secure a future among the stars:
If humanity wants to become a multi-planetary species, we also need to learn how to reproduce in space. SpaceLife Origin is thrilled to announce its Missions Program to enable sustainable life beyond earth. A world’s first and truly unique critical step in the future of mankind. We believe that any space company, agency or nation with ambitions for colonization of other planets will benefit from partnering with us for the successful execution and completion of their own plans.
SpaceLife Origin has three missions currently in development. The first, Mission Ark, is scheduled to launch in 2020 and will send special capsules into space containing human “Seeds-of-Life” cells to act as an interstellar insurance policy for all of humankind. The second mission, Mission Lotus, will launch a “Space-Embryo-Incubator” in 2021 and see human embryos form in low-Earth orbit before returning to Earth for in-utero fertilization and terrestrial birth.
Finally, Mission Cradle is planned for 2024 and will see the world’s first extraterrestrial human born - if all goes according to SpaceLife Origin’s plan. The Mission Cradle mission proposes sending a pregnant woman into space for 24-36 hours to “give birth at 250 miles above Earth, accompanied by a trained, world-class medical team” aboard a space station. No word yet on how they plan to keep an extremely pregnant woman calm and healthy throughout a launch into space - not exactly the most stress-free environment.
While giving in birth in space makes for one heck of a story, a successful extraterrestrial birth would also lend hope to the dream of someday sending colonies of humans on multi-generational voyages to strange and distant new homes out among the stars. Could it happen in our lifetime?