Four space tourists completed their groundbreaking flight into Earth’s orbit on Saturday, three days after landing in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of the US state of Florida.
Photo: SITA / APAnd SpaceX
The capsule carrying four space tourists landed in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Florida on Saturday, September 18, 2021. The amateur crew was the first to fly around the world without a professional astronaut.
This civilian crew was flown exclusively into space by the American company SpaceX. The Associated Press reported that the plane was the first to fly around Earth without a professional astronaut.
The parachute capsule landed in the ocean just before sunset, near where the crew had set out three days earlier. The fully automated Crew Dragon spacecraft reached an altitude of 585 kilometers after launch. The Associated Press said it crossed the International Space Station (ISS) a distance of 160 kilometers.
SpaceX flew tourists into space aboard its Falcon 9 launch vehicle Thursday night. The rocket was launched from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. About 12 minutes later, the unmanned Dragon spacecraft successfully separated from the rocket and entered orbit, while the first stage of the reusable rocket returned to Earth, landing vertically on a platform located at sea.
All the space tourists on this special mission called Inspiration4 are Americans. The spaceflight was requested by 38-year-old businessman and billionaire Jared Isaacman, who was also the mission’s leader. Alongside him are 29-year-old nurse Hayley Arsenault, 51-year-old professor of geology Sian Proctor, and 42-year-old US Air Force veteran Chris Sembrowski. AFP said they were chosen on the basis of competition.
SpaceX did not reveal the price of the mission, but according to Agence France-Presse it amounts to tens of millions of dollars.
Before starting, the crew had to complete six months of training, which included climbing stratovolcano Rainier in the US, experiencing severe crowding and remaining in a state of weightlessness.
The flight was fully automated, but SpaceX trained the crew to be able to control the spacecraft in the event of an emergency. For SpaceX, this is the fourth manned mission overall. SpaceX has already delivered ten astronauts to the International Space Station for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
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