Billionaire Jeff Bezos will take to space on Tuesday, during the first crewed flight of his rocket, New Shepard.
Jeff Bezos will be joined by Mark Bezos, his brother Wally Funk, an 82-year-old space race pioneer, and an 18-year-old student.
They will travel in a capsule with the largest flying windows in space, offering breathtaking views of Earth.
Blue Origin, the space company founded by Amazon Executive Chairman Jeff Bezos in 2000, has been testing prototypes of its New Shepard rocket and capsule for more than a decade.
After 15 successful test flights with no one on board, Blue Origin is ready to put its spacecraft to the ultimate test: its first manned space flight, with Bezos on board. His brother Mark, aerospace pioneer Wally Funk and Dutch teenager Oliver Daemen also plan to be on board for the scheduled 11-minute flight.
They must float in microgravity for a few minutes, then return to the grounds of the company’s private facility in Texas.
Bezos’ company is just one of many companies of a 21st century generation in a new space race, led primarily by investors, rather than just superpower governments.
He’s also one of many billionaires who invest money in businesses, with Bezos taking on Elon Musk and Richard Branson in the growing space industry.
Like them, Bezos’ vision for his business goes beyond launching wealthy passengers on spacewalks. Blue Origin’s mission is to create “A future where millions of people live and work in space for the benefit of the Earth”, and Bezos sees Tuesday’s flight as the next step towards achieving that goal.