Tue. Oct 19th, 2021

This will be the first time in 60 years of human spaceflight that no professional astronaut has been bound aboard a runway.

SpaceX was aiming to blow a billionaire into orbit Wednesday night with his two contest winners and a health worker who survived childhood cancer.

It’s the first passenger flight for Elon Musk’s SpaceX and a major step into space tourism by a private company.

“I’m blown away,” Benji Reed, director of SpaceX, said on the eve of the launch of the Kennedy Space Center at NASA in Florida in the United States. “Even now it gives me goosebumps to talk about it.”

The Pennsylvania entrepreneur who picks up the page – Jared Isaacman – will not say how much he paid.

After Isaacman and his fellow passengers shot down somewhere after 20:02 local time on Wednesday (00:02 GMT), they will orbit the earth for three days at an extremely high altitude of 575 km – 160 km (100 miles) higher than the International Space Station – before sinking off the coast of Florida over the weekend.

From left, Chris Sembroski, Sian Proctor, Jared Isaacman and Hayley Arceneaux sit in the SpaceX Dragon capsule at Cape Canaveral in Florida, USA during a dress rehearsal for the launch of Wednesday [File: SpaceX via AP]

In July, Virgin Galactic’s Richard Branson and Blue Origin’s Jeff Bezos launched their own rockets on board to boost ticket sales.

However, their flights barely took up space and lasted only a few minutes.

Isaacman and the other assistant assistant to St Jude Children’s Research Hospital doctor, Hayley Arceneaux, and the winner Chris Sembroski, a computer engineer, and Sian Proctor, an educator from the community college, met on the eve of the launch. said they have little or no last-minute load.

This will be the first time in 60 years of human spaceflight that no professional astronaut has been bound aboard a runway.

The fully automatic passenger capsule was already in orbit: it was used for SpaceX’s second astronaut flight for NASA to the space station.

Photographers set up remote cameras near a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket that landed on Kennedy Space Space Launch Road 39A in Cape Canaveral, Florida, USA on September 15. [AP Photo/Chris O’Meara]

The only significant change to the capsule, according to Reed, is the large dome window at the top in place of the usual coupling mechanisms of the space station.

Isaacman, founder of a payment processing company and a skilled pilot, says SpaceX CEO Musk assured him “the entire leadership team is solely focused on this mission and is very confident.”

He added: “Of course, it also inspires a lot of confidence in us.”

Musk flew in for the launch, as did hundreds of SpaceX workers and representatives from St Jude Hospital.

Isaacman uses the flight to raise $ 200 million for St Jude, half of which comes from his own pocket.

While NASA plays no role in the trip, its pilots and astronauts are calling the flight, called Inspiration4.

“For me, the more people involved, whether private or government, the better,” said NASA astronaut Shane Kimbrough, who is at the end of his six-month space station.

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