Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced, via a video clip on “Instagram”, that he will travel to space in the first flight organized by “Blue Origin”.
He said he and his brother Mark will be launched into space on July 20 aboard a rocket built by Bezos’ Blue Origin space company.
The company announced in May that it would target that date for the first manned flight, but did not say that Bezos himself would participate.
In the video, Bezos indicated that a trip to space was a lifelong dream, and that it would be “useful” to take his brother with him on this trip.
He said, “Since I was five years old, I have dreamed of traveling to space. On July 20, I will make this trip with my brother.”
The rocket will launch from the ground, and once it reaches the Karman Line, 100 kilometers above sea level, the capsule will detach from the booster, allowing those inside to see the curvature of the Earth and experience weightlessness. Then, the booster and capsule will land separately, with the capsule landing in the West Texas desert with the help of parachutes.
Bezos, who will step down as Amazon CEO on July 5, will join the one-seat winner from the online auction on the first spaceflight from Blue Origin in the same month.
The company completed the first round of the auction last month and said it had received more than 5,200 bids from 136 countries, but it did not disclose the highest bid in this round.
The highest bid so far in the ongoing second round was $2.8 million, according to the company’s website.
The process will continue until the tenth of June, then an online auction will be held on the 12th of the same month.
The company aims to launch its first space flight on July 20 on its spacecraft, in what would be a defining moment in the competition and ushering in a new era of private commercial space travel.
Source: Reuters + The Verge