Amazon chief Jeff Bezos and three others are set for a short ride to suborbital space and back Tuesday.
Bezos’ brother Mark Bezos, Mercury 13 and aviation pioneer Wally Funk and teenage physics student Oliver Daemon are the other passengers who will board Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket at 9 a.m. ET from Blue Origin’s Launch Site One in West Texas.
82-year-old Funk and Daemon, 18, will set new records by becoming the oldest and youngest persons to fly to the space, respectively.
“The vehicle is ready to fly. There are no technical issues with the spacecraft,” said Chris Yeager, Blue Origin’s chief engineer for New Shepard, in a prelaunch press conference Sunday.
Blue Origin’s Launch Site One is in a remote location in the West Texas desert. There are no on-site public viewing areas in the vicinity of the launch site. The Texas Department of Transportation will be closing a portion of State Highway 54 adjacent to the launch site and will not allow spectators on the closed portion of the road during the launch.
Blue Origin is the company that Bezos founded in 2000 with plans for human spaceflight.
The billionaire is the latest to make a suborbital spaceflight after English business magnate Richard Branson made the historic flight by reaching the edge of space on July 11.
Branson’s Virgin Galactic rocket plane launched to space driven by two pilots, while Bezos’ space capsule is fully automated.
Virgin Galactic reached an altitude of 86 kilometre while New Shepard rocket is expected to soar even higher, up to 106 kilometres.
The space tourists will remain in outer-space for just 3-4 minutes before returning to Earth.
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