Jeff Bezos completed his first space flight with Blue Origin

Jeff Bezos completed his first space flight with Blue Origin

The maiden manned flight of Blue Origin's New Shepard shuttle took off. The launch a few minutes after 15 Italian time from a base in Texas. After about 11 minutes the return

From left, Mark Bezos, Jeff Bezos, Oliver Daemen and Wally Funk (photo: Blue Origin) New Shepard at the starting block. The reusable rocket-shuttle of the aerospace company Blue Origin left at 15.12 Italian on 20 July 2021 from its launch location in the western Texas desert. Small delay on the schedule to verify that everything was perfect, but the shuttle took off without obstacles. Return about 11 minutes later. On board, for the first time in the history of the space company, a crew of four. And not just any four: in addition to Jeff Bezos, founder of Blue Origin itself and Amazon, and his brother Mark, there will be the one who will be the oldest and the youngest person to go to space, the 82-year-old Wally Funk and the 18-year-old Oliver Daemen.

Blue Origin's New Shepard

Flight schedule

After 15 successful unmanned test flights and some suspense for Federal Aviation clearance US administration (FAA), New Shepard (named after Alan Shepard, the first US man to go to space) today, on the anniversary of the Apollo 11 landing, made the first transport that inaugurates the era of Blue Origin's “tourist” space flights.

Our first human flight on Tuesday will be the 16th flight in #NewShepard 's history. Learn about the meticulous & rigorous launch program that brought us to this first step. Watch the launch live on, starting at 6:30 am CDT / 11:30 UTC. #NSFirstHumanFlight

- Blue Origin (@blueorigin) July 18, 2021

The actual flight lasted about ten minutes overall. New Shepard was launched about 100 kilometers above the Kármán line which marks the boundary between Earth's atmosphere and Space. For three minutes, passengers experienced microgravity conditions, such as those experienced by astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS), and enjoyed a panorama of our planet that very few in the world have had the privilege of seeing live (they will. , among other things, from the largest portholes ever made for a space capsule). Then the shuttle plunged back into the Earth's atmosphere, finally landing thanks to a parachute.

The New Shepard of Blue Origin (Blue Origin)

The crew

In recent days Jeff Bezos has not he hid his excitement about the upcoming event. No nervousness for the billionaire, who reports that he has trained and is prepared for launch, just as the vehicle is ready.

Our astronauts have completed training and are a go for launch. #NSFirstHumanFlight

- Blue Origin (@blueorigin) July 19, 2021

The other passengers also attended training. Few doubts about the preparation of Wally Funk, whose past speaks for itself: a pioneer of the US air force, in the 1960s she was part of the private program Mercury 13, which had selected female candidates, excluded from NASA, suitable to become astronauts. That coveted limit Funk is about to overcome, albeit for a few minutes, by becoming the oldest person ever to have gone into space.

At the opposite extreme is the 18-year-old Oliver Daemen, who will take the record for the youngest astronaut of all time. The identity of the boy, Blue Origin's first paying passenger, remained hidden until a few days ago. The father, chief executive of Somerset Capital Partners, paid for the ticket some 28 million dollars.

The return

After about 7 minutes and twenty seconds the rocket has “reached its destination ”And released the spacecraft, which shortly after took the way back: opened the parachute it floated towards the ground accompanied by the echo of the crew's enthusiastic cries. At 3:23 pm New Shepard touched the ground of our planet again. Less than 11 minutes that the brothers Bezos, Funk and Daemen will always remember.

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