Despite Tuesday’s flight, Jeff Bezos is running out of time to save Blue Origin

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Ars Technica 21 July, 2021 - 02:30pm 31 views

How much did it cost to launch Blue Origin?

The price was originally $200,000 and later raised to $250,000, but Virgin Galactic stopped sales in 2014 after a crash of its first space plane during a test flight. Virgin Galactic officials say they will resume sales later this year, and the price will likely be higher than $250,000. The New York TimesHow Much Does It Cost to Fly on Blue Origin's New Shepard?

What time does the Blue Origin launch?

Liftoff is set for 9 a.m. EDT (1300 GMT). You can watch Blue Origin's historic first astronaut launch here and on BlueOrigin.com. The webcast will begin at 7:30 a.m. EDT (1130 GMT). Space.comBlue Origin to launch its 1st astronaut flight with Jeff Bezos and crew of 3 today

How much did Jeff Bezos flight cost?

The only indication of Blue Origin's pricing structure is a public auction the company held for a seat on its first flight with Bezos, which went for $28 million. CNBCJeff Bezos says sales of Blue Origin space tourist flights are 'approaching $100 million' already

How much did Jeff Bezos spend to go to space?

Jeff Bezos Just Spent $5.5B to Be in Space for 4 Minutes. Here Are 7 Things That Money Could Help Solve. globalcitizen.orgJeff Bezos Just Spent $5.5B to Be in Space for 4 Minutes. Here Are 7 Things That Money Could Help Solve.

Amazon founder latest billionaire to make it into space

69News WFMZ-TV 21 July, 2021 - 05:00pm

Partly sunny and rather humid with a gusty thunderstorm in spots..

Turning out clear and more comfortable.

After a little more than 10 minutes, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos became the latest billionaire to fly into space.

While they didn't enter orbit, it took more than two decades for Bezos' company, Blue Origin, to develop the New Shepard, which took Bezos and three others about 60 miles up to experience zero gravity for a few minutes.

It's the second private business in less than two weeks to fly into space, and certainly not the last.

The rocket is reusable, with the goal to make space travel accessible and - eventually - affordable.

"What this space tourism mission is about is having a mission where we can practice so much we really get good at operation travel – more like an airline and less what you think of as traditional space travel. If we can do that then we can build a road to space for the next generations to do amazing things there," Bezos said.

 "We've been talking with students in the community a lot and space always comes up," said Da Vinci Science Center Senior Director of Education Karen Knecht.

She says this emphasis on accessibility is renewing kid's interest in space, and STEM education as a whole.

"It's interesting to note that there was a gigantic team working on this for a very, very long time. So there's lots of ways to participate even if getting in the rocket is not your jam," Knecht said.

Blue Origin says it wants to take two more trips before the end of the year.

This may not be something you or I will be able to do anytime soon, but the hope is that the generations that follow us will, which Bezos said he thinks will be key to solving problems right here at home.

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Wally Funk’s dream come true was good for all of us

The Dallas Morning News 21 July, 2021 - 02:00am

2:00 AM on Jul 21, 2021 CDT

For us, it was the presence on board of our own Wally Funk, now a history-making Texan who became the oldest person to enter space and someone whose life story should inspire all of us. It’s not only about how far we have come but how far we can go, and how far our spirits, our devotion and our endurance can take us.

At the age of 82, Funk was part of a four-person crew on the 10-minute, 18-second mission there and back again, flying aboard Blue Origin’s private suborbital spacecraft with Bezos, his brother Mark, and 18-year-old Oliver Daemen. For Funk, it was a happy ending to her long journey to get to space — a story marked by discrimination that for too long prevented women from chasing their dreams as men could.

Funk has long been a barrier breaker and an adventurer. She has been flying since she was just 17 and has taught thousands of people to fly since. When Funk was younger, she set her sights on space travel and applied to fly with NASA in 1961 as part of the Woman in Space Program. She was one of 13 women to pass the physical examinations to qualify. But none of them ever went to space, according to NASA’s history of the program. Funk was denied on the basis of not having an engineering degree or experience as a test pilot — John Glenn was accepted despite not fitting either of those credentials, according to published reports.

She never let the disappointment break her. As she told The New York Times, “I was brought up that when things don’t work out, you go to your alternative.”

She had to wait the better part of six decades for that alternative, but for seven beautiful seconds Tuesday, she was in space where she deserved to be.

Her life story is only the latest reminder of the struggle women have had through history to be recognized for their accomplishments. It was both purely sweet to witness her joy Tuesday and bittersweet to imagine what could have been.

For her part, Funk seems focused mostly on the sweetness of the moment. Given her big and enduring spirit, we aren’t surprised.

At one point, she said she thought she would never go up. But she did, and like all who enter space, she marveled at it mid-flight. “It’s so dark up here,” she said.

After she landed, in amusement and amazement and exuberance at the trip finally taken and the dream finally realized, she simply said, “Oh my God, it was so good.”

You deserved it, Wally Funk. And your trip was good for all of us.

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