Private Sub-orbital Spaceflights With Blue Origin
Blue Origin is an American aerospace and space tourism company which is planning to launch paying customers into space aboard their reusable New Shepard launch vehicle in 2019. The flights would last about 10 minutes, reaching a height of over 330,000 ft before making a soft landing by parachute.
Facts About Blue Origin And Their Private Sub-orbital Spaceflights!
- Blue Origin is a private company founded by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos who funds the company by investing up to USD $1 billion a year.
- The company develops rocket engines and is developing a heavy-lift rocket called the New Glenn in addition to its planned private spaceflight services.
- The aim of Blue Origin is to make spaceflight accessible to everyday people by reducing the cost, increase reliability by developing reusable space launch vehicles.
- Blue Origin has developed a vertical takeoff and landing rocket (also known as a booster) and capsule called the New Shepard which will offer paying space tourist, suborbital flights from early 2019.
- The unmanned New Shepard booster and capsule made their first successful takeoff and soft landings on November 23rd New Shepard reached an altitude of over 100 km (330,000ft); above the Karman line which is defined as the beginning of space!
- The same New Shepard booster and capsule were flown again several times demonstrating the system's safety and reusability!
- A private suborbital spaceflight with Blue Origin aboard the New Shepard begins by launching like a rocket before the capsule separates and lands separately on its parachutes, while the booster lands by rocket engine near its launch pad.
- The flight lasts about 10-12 minutes in total, with passengers experiencing several minutes of weightlessness while the capsule reaches an altitude of over 330,000 ft.
- It’s believed a flight aboard New Shepard would cost a similar amount as the spaceflights offered by Virgin Galactic at around $250,000 USD.