This Startup Wants to Send a Pregnant Woman to Space to Give Birth

“It’s a small step for a baby, but a giant baby-step for mankind.”
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By Stephanie Grassullo, Associate Editor
Published January 3, 2019
staged environment that shows newborn baby in space suit surrounded by stars and planets

Welcome to 2019, where anything seems possible—including a baby born in space.

Biotech and mission development company SpaceLife Origin has big plans set for the next few years. The Netherlands company wants to send a pregnant woman to space to give birth by the year 2024, The Atlantic skeptically points out.

While the idea sounds pretty far-fetched, the startup lays out all its steps for Mission Cradle—the name they have officially dubbed their plan—on its website.

“A pregnant woman will give birth in outer space—well-prepared and safely supported by a medical expert team,” the website boasts.

Mission Cradle is expected to last 24 to 36 hours, and in that timeframe a woman will give birth 250 miles above Earth. SpaceLife Origin is confident it will have a carefully planned and monitored procedure similar to standards in western medicine, reducing any potential risks.

“It’s a small step for a baby, but a giant baby-step for mankind,” says Egbert Edelbroek, SpaceLife Origins chief strategy and innovation officer.

The woman would be sent to galaxies far, far away in a spaceship, where she then would give birth in a space station. Once the proper medical checks are executed and baby and mom are cleared to return home, the team will blast back to Earth. Easy peasy, right?

Except, there are a ton of doubts which instantly come to mind. Many of which are mentioned in the FAQs for Mission Cradle, but some of the obvious ones include concerns over if it’s safe for the pregnant woman and her baby, and how to prepare for the already unpredictable nature of childbirth as well as unexpected pregnancy risks that may arise in space. While SpaceLife Origin seems to have answers to all these questions, it still leaves you to wonder how well a team can really prepare for something so unknown.

Right now, the team is still in the planning mode. Once all the loose ends are tied up, it’ll be ready to accept applicants. Until then, we’ll have to stick to the regular ol’ delivery procedure, which, to be fair, comes with a bunch of its own crazy surprises as is.

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