The first full-scale “charter flight” into space took off from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Three minutes after 02:00 Swedish time, the four passengers began their journey, and ten minutes later they reached space.
The skies were clear, the mood was high and onlookers cheered around the Kennedy Space Center to catch up with SpaceX’s control room as a Falcon 9 rocket at 20.03 local time soared skyward.
Three hours later, the space company was able to announce via Twitter that the four on board had reached 585 kilometers into space, the altitude at which their spacecraft will go into Earth orbit.
When they were nearly halfway through, billionaire Jared Isakman thanked everyone who made the trip possible and said, “We are opening the door to exciting and unexplored frontiers, to which few have come before and many more will follow.”
– And the door is now open and it’s great, he continued.
The 38-year-old became a billionaire after dropping out of school as a teenager and then founded the online payment company Shift 4. In-universe, he brought 42-year-old Chris Sembrowski, 51-year-old Sian Procter, and 29-year-old Hayley Arsenault with him. . The latter survived childhood cancer, and the goal of the trip is to raise up to $200 million (1.7 billion kroner), among other things, for cancer research. Their preparations are followed up on Netflix’s Inspiration4 series.
How much Isaacman paid Space X to entrepreneur Elon Musk is a secret. But in addition to the charitable goal, the project is a showcase of Musk’s space plans – along with NASA, he plans bases on both the Moon and Mars, and has declared that man will become a “multi-planetary species.”
View of the dome in the glass
The capsule in which the four astronauts travel is a Crew Dragon, which Space X also uses in NASA’s contract traffic while transporting astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS). But this specimen, called elasticity, has special “tourist traits”. Where there was usually the docking door to connect to the International Space Station, there is now instead a large viewing dome of glass, for you to enjoy our planet from above and immortalize the best photo opportunities.
The difference from previous similar investments in space tourism is in part that it has to be very far, three days at an altitude of 585 kilometers, beyond the International Space Station. Second, the Dragon capsule contains entirely “civilians,” i.e. no fully trained astronaut leading the flight.
The plan is for the enclosure to handle the entire voyage, up to a planned landing in the Atlantic this weekend. Until then, the Crew Dragon will travel around Earth at a speed that allows them to circumnavigate the globe in 90 minutes.
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