BILLIONAIRE Jeff Bezos has announced he’ll launch himself into space next month.
The Amazon founder will also be taking his brother on the first human spaceflight by his company Blue Origin.
Bezos revealed in an Instagram post: “Ever since I was five years old, I’ve dreamed of traveling to space.
“On July 20th, I will take that journey with my brother.
“The greatest adventure with my best friend.”
Currently the second richest man in the world, Bezos posted a video on his Instagram which showed him and his brother discussing the flight.
Bezos is also auctioning off a seat to a member of the public so they can join the maiden flight.
The money raised will be given to charity.
The rich winner of the online auction will get a place on Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket-and-capsule combo.
It’s designed to autonomously fly six passengers more than 62 miles (100 km) above Earth.
That’s high enough to experience a few minutes of weightlessness and see the curvature of the planet before the pressurised capsule returns to earth under parachutes.
The capsule features six observation windows Blue Origin says are nearly three times as tall as those on a Boeing 747 jetliner and the largest ever used in space.
“The view will be spectacular,” Blue Origin’s Director of Astronaut Sales, Ariane Cornell, previously told a media briefing.
Bezos will be stepping down as Amazon CEO on July 5, a move the 57-year-old claims to be making so he can focus on other projects.
He’ll then have 15 days before his flight to space.
For July’s flight, the reusable New Shepard booster will launch and land in West Texas.
The flight promises to be a landmark moment as US firms strive toward a new era of private commercial space travel.
After this, Blue Origin will aim to have a few more spaceflights before the end of the year.
We don’t yet know how much ticket prices will be.
In 2018, Reuters reported that Blue was planning to charge passengers at least $200,000 for a ride.
Blue Origin’s flight path to suborbital space
A step-by-step guide to the journey…
- New Shepard is a reusable rocket with an attached crew capsule for passengers.
- New Shepard will launch vertically for about two and a half minutes before main engine cut-off.
- The capsule will then separate from the rocket; passengers will be weightless for about four minutes during the 11-minute flight.
- Those on-board will be high enough (at an altitude of 307,000 feet or 93,573 meters) to see the curvature of Earth.
- The spacecraft will coast for a few minutes in space before re-entering the atmosphere.
- New Shepard will land using an autonomous, rocket powered vertical landing system.
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