Blue Origin to launch its 1st astronaut flight with Jeff Bezos and crew of 3 today

Blue Origin will try an historic first crewed spaceflight Tuesday (July 20), as the corporate makes an attempt to launch its billionaire founder Jeff Bezos and a crew of three to kick-start an area vacationer program for individuals who’ve at all times needed to fly in house.If all goes to plan, the corporate’s New Shepard rocket and capsule will take off for an 11-minute journey, launching and touchdown exterior Van Horn, Texas at Blue Origin services, dubbed Launch Site One. The rocket will carry the spacecraft on a suborbital path earlier than separating, permitting the crew to descend of their capsule beneath parachutes for a floor touchdown. Liftoff is ready for 9 a.m. EDT (1300 GMT). You can watch Blue Origin’s historic first astronaut launch right here and on The webcast will start at 7:30 a.m. EDT (1130 GMT).Related: How to watch Blue Origin launch Jeff Bezos into house on July 20Reside updates: Blue Origin’s first astronaut launch updatesThe crew of Blue Origin’s First Human Flight mission will launch on the corporate’s New Shepard rocket on July 20, 2021. They are (From left): Oliver Daemen, Wally Funk, Jeff Bezos and his brother Mark Bezos. (Image credit score: Blue Origin)Crew member Wally Funk, 82, has been ready the longest for the flight alternative. The Mercury 13 aviator tried six many years in the past to be part of NASA’s astronaut corps, however was excluded due to her gender and lack of navy expertise throughout an period when American ladies had been excluded from navy pilots. The first American girl in house, Sally Ride, did not attain orbit till 1983.When Funk was requested in a CBS interview Monday (July 19) about her wait since she was a “twentysomething”, Funk joked that she nonetheless feels 24 years previous. Indeed, the octogenarian mentioned she plans to do “somersaults and tumble and do anything that I’ve learned to do” throughout her 19,600 hours of flight expertise on-Earth.Bezos created Blue Origin in 2000 to chase down a childhood dream for spaceflight; he determined at a younger age to change into a wealthy entrepreneur to fund his approach into changing into an astronaut, and struck it wealthy after founding e-commerce big Amazon in 1995.”People say they go into space [and] that they come back changed; astronauts always talk about that,” Bezos informed NBC Today on Monday. “I can’t wait to see what it’s going to do to me,” the very long time businessperson added.Related: ‘Mercury 13′ pilot Wally Funk carrying 60 years of historical past to house on Blue Origin flightReferring to the “overview effect” that some astronauts say they expertise once they take a look at Earth from above, Bezos mentioned he’s anticipating seeing “the thin limit of the Earth’s atmosphere, and seeing how fragile the planet is, that it’s just one planet.”Bezos’ brother Mark, a enterprise capitalist and volunteer firefighter, informed CBS that he’s nonetheless in disbelief that he will get to expertise such a uncommon alternative that “your big brother loves.”He added, “I fell in love with space, the promise of it, the adventure of it. I’m just so excited to be able to be there, and represent my mom and dad and our sister Christina, and supporting Jeff. Realizing this lifelong dream, it’s a real honor.”Related: Blue Origin’s launch with Jeff Bezos: Everything you want to knowOliver Daemen, 18, would be the youngest individual in house when he launches on Blue Origin’s New Shepard spacecraft on July 20, 2021. (Image credit score: Blue Origin)Rounding out the crew is 18-year-old Oliver Daemen, whose father (Somerset Capital Partners CEO Joes Daemen) bankrolled the journey for an undisclosed quantity. Daemen is engaged on a pilot’s license and has been fascinated by house since age 4. Daemen got here onto the crew on the final minute after an public sale winner, who efficiently bid $28 million for a seat on the primary flight, couldn’t make alternative due to a scheduling battle. As the runner-up bidder, Oliver moved up a flight from being scheduled on the second crew.When requested by CBS how he was feeling, Daemen mentioned whereas it has been laborious to sleep these days as a result of of the anticipation, “the excitement just overtakes the nervousness” and he cannot wait to go up to house. Follow Elizabeth Howell on Twitter @howellspace. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook. 

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