Jeff Bezos flies into space. After Richard Branson of Virgin Galactic recently took a trip into space, Jeff Bezos has now joined the ranks of billionaires flying into space.
He’s done it. Jeff Bezos successfully flew into space for the first time today. It was the first manned space trip of Bezos’ own space company Blue Origin. The short trip reached to the edge of space, that is, at the boundary between Earth and space, where weightlessness begins.
Here, Jeff Bezos and all the other occupants experienced weightlessness in space for about three minutes. The Blue Origin spacecraft took off from Launch Site One in Texas at nine o’clock in the morning local time today and has already successfully landed again.
82-year-old Wally Funk on board: oldest person in space
Joining Jeff Bezos and crew members from Blue Origin on board were brother Mark Bezos, Bezos’ son Preston and Bezos’ partner Lauren Sanchez. Also flying were 82-year-old pilot Wally Funk and 18-year-old Oliver Daemen from the Netherlands.
This makes Wally Funk the oldest person ever to be in space. For Funk, however, a lifelong dream is also coming true. She participated in a training program for female astronauts back in the 1960s, but failed to make it into space even after multiple requests. NASA kept rejecting her applications.
Decades later, it finally worked out. Apparently, however, Wally Funk is planning further space flights in the future, including with Blue Origin competitor Virgin Galactic.
Its founder, Richard Branson, recently flew into space in one of his spaceships.
Teenager pays millions to fly along
Oliver Daemen, for his part, is Blue Origin’s first paying customer and also the youngest person ever to go into space. He replaces the person who was originally supposed to fly along. In an anonymous auction, interested parties could bid on the first flight with Blue Origin.
The person who won paid $28 million, but apparently was unable to fly due to a scheduling conflict.
The seat was then taken by Oliver Daemen. The millions for the flight appear to have come from his father’s trust fund, Business Insider reports. Exactly how much Deamen paid for the flight is not publicly known.
Jeff Bezos in space: “That was incredible!”
Although the flight was very entertaining, the occupants seemed thrilled. When Jeff Bezos was in space, he announced: “You have a very lucky crew up here.” And, “The very best day. That was incredible.”
Bezos doesn’t just want to take tourists into space with his space company, Blue Origin. His long-term vision is a space colony where people in space create a better version of our planet.