A bidder has paid USD 28 million to book a seat in Blue Origin’s spaceflight. The bidder paid the amount during an auction. This will be the first crewed spaceflight of Blue Origin. The flight is scheduled for next month. The bidder will fly alongside Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos and his brother Mark. The two will take seats onboard Blue Origin’s New Shepard. The company didn’t share the name of the winner. Blue Origin said that the name will be announced once the auction is completed. The winner beat around 20 rivals during the auction. The name of the fourth and final crew member will also be declared alongside. The spacecraft will fly to the edge of space and return.
The spacecraft will lift off from West Texas on July 20. It coincides with the 52nd anniversary of Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin’s landing on the Moon. According to Blue Origin, the trip of New Shepard will last 10 minutes. The four will spend above the Karman line. It is a boundary of Earth from where space starts. The line falls in the outermost atmosphere of Earth. It is approximately 100 km high. Blue Origin has test flown New Shepard around 15 times. However, the 15 flies were conducted without people on board. New Shepard is a reusable suborbital rocket. It stands 60-foot-tall. The company claims that it can launch a capsule around 65 miles into the sky.
The capsule that will fly to space is named RSS First Step. It is a gumdrop-shaped pod. It can carry up to six passengers. There are big windows for passengers to look at space. Clue Origin said that proceeds generated from the exercise will go to the company’s philanthropy. The company has advised passengers to consult a doctor to know their health conditions and ability to fly. It said that passengers will be taught about various risk factors of flying to space. This will be the first crewed flight of Blue Origin’s spacecraft. Notably, several aerospace firms are working rigorously to develop a system that will take humans to space. Blue Origin’s rival SpaceX already ferries astronauts to the International Space Station for NASA. SpaceX is also preparing a rocket that will take humans deep into space.