Jeff Bezos Wants to Bring First Tourists to Space in July
Blue Origin, the space company of businessman Jeff Bezos, wants to bring tourists to space for the first time on July 20.
The intention is that they fly to an altitude of more than 100 kilometres. There they are weightless for a few minutes and see the curvature of the Earth. Then the rig returns with its passengers to the ground floor. The spacecraft is not going high or fast enough to orbit our planet.
Blue Origin, founded about twenty years ago, announced the plans on Wednesday. The spacecraft is called New Shepard. There is room for six paying travellers on board.
Bezos, the wealthiest person in the world, is best known as the founder of Amazon. Since Wednesday, one can bid for the trip of about ten minutes. Blue Origin will announce the winners on June 12.
Competitor SpaceX of businessman Elon Musk (PayPal, Tesla) is already bringing professional astronauts to the International Space Station. Later this year, he wants to give a few civilians a chance to go to space. Musk wants to have a Japanese businessman fly around the Moon in a few years.
In addition, in a few years, SpaceX must put astronauts on the Moon and return them safely to Earth. Musk received that multi-billion-dollar assignment from the American space agency NASA. Competitor Blue Origin, who missed the order, is challenging the decision.
Another aerospace company, Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic, plans to send the first humans to space this or next year.