We all know that Blue Origin’s first flight on July 20 traveled to the space with Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and three others passengers on board. So, how was the journey like? Here’s a list of highlights from the 10-minute space travel.
- The company’s capsule landed in West Texas around 8.22 GMT, after the 10-minute, 10-second flight on Blue Origin’s New Shepard spacecraft.
- Jeff Bezos was accompanied by his brother, Mark Bezos, an 82-year-old pioneer of the space race, Wally Funk, and an 18-year-old student, Oliver Daemen in a 10-foot-tall capsule with large windows and reclining leather seats
- During the 10-minute travel over 60 miles (100km) above Earth, they saw stunning views of the Earth beyond Karman line, the wide boundary of space, and experienced around three minutes of weightlessness after unbuckling their harnesses
- During the last two minutes, the capsule detached from its rocket and went upwards towards the Karman line
- The capsule reached a maximum altitude of about 107km before making its soft landing in the Van Horn desert
- When the capsule touched down, Bezos exclaimed, “Best day ever!”
- After returning from the exhilarating journey in a press-briefing, Jeff Bezos said, “My expectations were high and they were dramatically exceeded.”
- Funk stated, “It was great, I loved it, I can hardly wait to go again.”
With this space travel, Wally Funk touches a new high by becoming the oldest ever woman aviator at the age of 82 years, living a lifetime dream that was trashed in the early space era. Funk has been a part of the Mercury 13 project in 1960s. She went through the same screening tests as that of male astronauts, but was never allowed to fly under the US national space programme.
Oliver Daemen, who became the youngest astronaut, is the son of a Dutch financier. He took the journey in place of the anonymous winner of a $28 million public auction, who was requested to skip the travel with Bezos due to “scheduling conflicts”.
Mark Bezos is a senior vice president at a New York-based charity called Robin Hood.
Jeff Bezos recently resigned as the CEO of Amazon to concentrate on his other ventures, including Blue Origin and its emerging market for space tourism.