Jeff Bezos in front of Blue Origin’s space capsule
Dubbed the ‘NewSpace’ set, Jeff Bezos, Sir Richard Branson and Elon Musk all say they were inspired by the primary moon landing in 1969, when the US beat the Soviet Union within the space race, and there isn’t a doubt how much it could mean to every of them to win the ‘latest space race’.
Amazon founder Bezos had looked set to be the primary of the three to fly to space, having announced plans to launch aboard his space company Blue Origin’s Latest Shepard spacecraft on July 20, but Branson beat him to the punch.
The British billionaire became Virgin Galactic Astronaut 001 when he made it to space on a suborbital flight nine days before Bezos – on July 11 in a test flight.
Bezos travelled to space on July 20 together with his younger brother Mark, Oliver Daemen, an 18-year-old physics student whose dad purchased his ticket, and pioneering female astronaut Wally Funk, 82.
Although SpaceX and Tesla founder Musk has said he desires to go into space, and even ‘die on Mars’, he has not said when he might blast into orbit – but has purchased a ticket with Virgin Galactic for a suborbital flight.
SpaceX became the primary of the ‘space tourism’ operators to send a completely civilian crew into orbit, with the Inspiration4 mission funded by billionaire Jared Isaacman.
His flight was on a Dragon capsule and SpaceX rocket built by space-obsessed billionaire, Elon Musk and took off for the three day orbital trip on September 16 – going higher than the International Space Station.
SpaceX appears to be leading the way in which within the broader billionaire space race with quite a few launches carrying NASA equipment to the ISS and partnerships to send tourists to space by 2021.
On February 6 2018, SpaceX sent rocket towards the orbit of Mars, 140 million miles away, with Musk’s own red Tesla roadster attached.
Elon Musk together with his Dragon Crew capsule
SpaceX has also taken two groups of astronauts to the |International Space Station, with crew from NASA, ESA and JAXA, the Japanese space agency.
SpaceX has been sending batches of 60 satellites into space to assist form its Starlink network, which is already in beta and providing fast web to rural areas.
Branson and Virgin Galactic are taking a special approach to conquering space. It has repeatedly, and successfully, conducted test flights of the Virgin Galactic’s Unity space plane.
The primary took place in December 2018 and the most recent on May 22, with the flight accelerating to greater than 2,000 miles per hour (Mach 2.7).
Greater than 600 affluent customers so far, including celebrities Brad Pitt and Katy Perry, have reserved a $250,000 (£200,000) seat on considered one of Virgin’s space trips. The ultimate tickets are expected to cost $350,000.
Branson has previously said he expects Elon Musk to win the race to Mars together with his private rocket firm SpaceX.
Richard Branson with the Virgin Galactic craft
SpaceShipTwo can carry six passengers and two pilots. Each passenger gets the identical seating position with two large windows – one to the side and one overhead.
The space ship is 60ft long with a 90inch diameter cabin allowing maximum room for the astronauts to drift in zero gravity.
It climbs to 50,000ft before the rocket engine ignites. SpaceShipTwo separates from its carrier craft, White Knight II, once it has passed the 50-mile mark.
Passengers develop into ‘astronauts’ once they reach the Karman line, the boundary of Earth’s atmosphere.
The spaceship will then make a suborbital journey with roughly six minutes of weightlessness, with all the flight lasting roughly 1.5 hours.
Bezos revealed in April 2017 that he funds Blue Origin with around $1 billion (£720 million) of Amazon stock every year.
The system consists of a pressurised crew capsule atop a reusable ‘Latest Shepard’ booster rocket.
At its peak, the capsule reached 65 miles (104 kilometres), just above the official threshold for space and landed vertically seven minutes after liftoff.
Blue Origin are working on Latest Glenn, the subsequent generation heavy lift rocket, that may compete with the SpaceX Falcon 9.