Here's Where You Can Watch Jeff Bezos Blast Off Into Space Today
Richard Branson beat Jeff Bezos to be the first billionaire in space aboard the Virgin Galactic Unity 11 spacecraft, but Bezos is gearing up to be the second billionaire in space as of this moment.
The founder of Amazon and Blue Origin is currently preparing for his highly publicized blastoff into space. At 7:30 p.m. Philippine time (that’s 6:30 a.m. CDT for Bezos), the former Amazon CEO will board Blue Origin’s New Shepard spacecraft for its first ever human flight to space.
Who will fly with him?
Bezos will be accompanied his brother, Mark Bezos, and two other lucky astronauts chosen by Bezos himself.
The third astronaut on the flight will be Wally Funk, an 82-year-old aeronautics pioneer who will be the oldest astronaut ever.
The fourth will be Oliver Daeman, a Dutch high school graduate who at 18 years old, will be the youngest astronaut ever. The son of a private equity investor, Daeman is also Blue Origin’s first-ever paying customer, although the ticket price is undisclosed.
What will happen on the trip?
Blue Origin’s maiden human flight is part of the space company’s larger mission to increase their footprint in space tourism. Launch will start at about 6:30 a.m. CDT, and liftoff is scheduled for 8:00 a.m. CDT (9:00 p.m. Philippine time). The rocket will take 11 minutes to ascend and reach its peak height before the capsule holding the astronauts will separate from the rocket.
Blue Origin currently only offers suborbital flights, meaning that it won’t be able to make a full orbit of Earth or go so far as to reach the International Space Station. But it will fly beyond the Karman line, which is the internationally recognized boundary of space. New Shepard will then float in space for a while, giving astronauts a stunning view of Earth from the biggest windows ever designed for a spacecraft.
The New Shepard is fully autonomous, meaning that no one on board will need to flip a switch.
How will they land?
Once the trip is over, the capsule containing Bezos and his co-astronauts will fall back to Earth. Parachutes will open to slow its fall before it makes a soft landing somewhere in the West Texas desert.
Where will it take place?
The launch and liftoff will take place at the Blue Origin Launch Site One, which is located in a remote desert area in West Texas. There will be no on-site public viewing, but you can view it online.
The launch marks a milestone for this upcoming age of space tourism, and you can view this pivotal moment on the Blue Origin website.