What You Need to Know About Blue Origin’s Launch into Space with Billionaire Jeff Bezos
The countdown has begun for Blue Origin’s first crewed spaceflight. On Tuesday, July 20, 2021, at 9:00A ET, Jeff Bezos and three crewmates are lifting off into space from Blue Origin’s Launch Site near Van Horn, Texas. Watch SPACE LAUNCH LIVE: BLUE ORIGIN & JEFF BEZOS GO TO SPACE on Discovery and Science Channels at 8:00A ET or at washingtonpost.com.
The Shepard rocket and capsule will carry four passengers to space and then back to Earth within 11 minutes. It's an automated system which means there will not be a pilot on board. The crew includes Jeff Bezos (the founder of Blue Origin), Mark Bezos (Jeff Bezos’ brother), Mary Wallace “Wally” Funk (a pioneering aviator that trained as one of 13 women associated with the Mercury program), and Oliver Daemon (a college student). After this spaceflight, Funk will be known as the oldest person to have flown in space and Daemon as the youngest.
New Shepard stands at 60 feet tall equipped with fins for aerodynamic stabilization. When it comes time to board the spacecraft on Earth, the crew will need to climb a launch tower in order to reach their seats. Then they will be sitting in a reclined position for over an hour before liftoff.
The space vehicle is set to fly just above the Kármán line, which outlines the edge of space. The astronauts will experience roughly three minutes of weightlessness and out of this world views before parachuting down to Earth in their crew capsule. The rocket will return autonomously and land at the launch site.
This will be the 16th flight for New Shepard, but the first with humans aboard. It is named after the first American to travel to space and Mercury astronaut, Alan Shepard.
The day of the scheduled launch, July 20, holds significance in space history; on this date in 1969, Neil Armstrong first stepped foot onto the lunar surface.
Billionaires are making their way to space, paving the way for the future of space exploration. Blue Origin's Jeff Bezos is ready for his first flight to space on Tuesday, July 20. Here is Blue Origin's journey to the final frontier.
Watch SPACE LAUNCH LIVE on Discovery and Science Channels at 8:00am ET or at washingtonpost.com. That night at 10P ET/PT, Discovery will air a 1 hour special, JEFF BEZOS IN SPACE: BLUE ORIGIN TAKES FLIGHT, highlighting the morning’s event, along with interviews from after the launch, behind-the-scenes material, and background stories of Blue Origins and Jeff Bezos.