A trip to space used to be for the trained and the few, but that is so last century.
One of the privately-owned space companies changing the way we think about spaceflight of the 21st century is Blue Origin, who wants to be the first to take you where only few have gone before: the final frontier.
Blue Origin — founded by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos in 2000 — now has an early notification service that will alert you the second they start selling tickets for a ride on their brand new space vehicle, called “New Shepard.”
By submitting your information, “You’ll receive early access to pricing information and tickets when we open reservations,” the company describes on the its registration website.
When you register, you get to choose how many seats to reserve. New Shepard can carry up to six passengers at a time to an altitude of 62 miles above Earth’s surface — the boundary where Earth ends and space begins.
For each ride, passengers get to experience four to five minutes of weightlessness before returning to Earth.
The New Shepard space vehicle has two parts: a crew capsule for passengers and a rocket for transportation. Blue Origin has built both parts for reuse and tested out the design for the first time last April.
While the rocket successfully reached space, it was not retrieved, and Blue Origin did not provide any details about what happened to it or where it is. The unmanned crew capsule, on the other hand, was successfully retrieved from space after parachuting back down to the surface — the same way the capsule would return to Earth if it were carrying passengers.
Before they can start ushering the public into space, Blue Origin will need to ensure their rocket is reusable. Otherwise, they would have to build a new rocket for each ride, which would be too expensive to maintain for very long.
Blue Origin didn’t specify when their tickets will go on sale or how much a single ticket will cost, but it looks like they have a little more work and at least one more flight test to complete beforehand.
All the same, they’re excited at the prospect of sending you to space and want to get you excited, too:
“Our New Shepard space vehicle will carry a new generation of explorers and adventurers — we’re looking forward to flying with you!” They write on the registration site.
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