Jeff Bezos is going to space (flying HIGHER than Branson)

Business

CNET 16 July, 2021 - 07:00am 7 views

Where does Virgin Galactic take off from?

They will take off from the company's homeport of Spaceport America in New Mexico, with a live webcast chronicling the flight. Here's everything you need to know about the mission, which Virgin Galactic has dubbed Unity 22. Space.comVirgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo Unity 22 launch with Richard Branson. See video and photos of the flight.

How long is Virgin Galactic flight?

How long will the space plane be up there? The trip will last in total about two and a half hours. However, Branson and his team will only be weightless in space for four to five minutes before the craft tilts and returns to Earth. The GuardianVirgin Galactic flight to the edge of space: your questions answered

How high is Richard Branson going?

Branson's flight today is expected to reach more than 50 miles high, which is the altitude the US government considers the beginning of outer space. Bezos' flight on July 20 will hit more than 62 miles high — also known as the Kármán line — which is the altitude internationally recognized as the boundary. CNNRichard Branson goes to space: Live updates

Why is Branson going to space?

The Branson flight by Virgin Galactic is part of the company's bid to open seats to paying space tourists in the coming months. The 70-year-old Branson founded the company in 2004 and has been wanting to go to space since July 1969, when he saw the Apollo 11 astronauts landing on the moon. Space.comVideo of Richard Branson's desert bike ride was recorded before Unity 22 launch day, Virgin Galactic clarifies

Read full article at CNET

Branson’s ‘space’ flight cracked open a market

Mint 17 July, 2021 - 05:01am

Whether Virgin’s boss actually went past our frontier to the dark yonder is irrelevant. What matters is the experience he’s offering space tourists in a market set to achieve escape velocity

This week, London-based Virgin group’s co-founder Richard Branson grabbed eyeballs across the globe, which was not unusual, for an act that was. The British billionaire who started out with niche music and made it big on a strategy of exploring novel spaces in diverse markets—a ‘brand promise’ that defied business gurus on ‘core competence’—flew to the edge of space in an ad capsule for his extra-terrestrial tourism venture. It was a spectacle that stirred demand for Virgin Galactic’s space rides aboard its six-seater craft VSS Unity at $250,000 per seat for 4 minutes of weightless existence with a wonderful view. It was a fizzy moment, but this newly cracked-open market lost some of its fizz soon after, as dismissals of his flight flew around social media. As he had reached just 85km above the planet’s surface, said critics, it was really just another high-altitude flight. Virgin’s archrival, Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin, keen to play pioneer itself, drew attention to its own intent to cross the so-called Karman line, beyond which it is so airless that nothing can fly without its own power. Some 15km further out, this is usually taken by scientists as the real frontier of space. By this yardstick, Branson’s inaugural trip fell short.

Did it? The market appears to have taken off anyway, with Virgin’s suborbital seats all the buzz among would-be spacefarers who have the money to spare. The company claims a robust response from across the world. To join the action as soon as possible, Bezos reportedly expects to take his shot into the dark yonder on 20 July, before Blue Origin launches a similar tour service. In a way, the countdown to this private race for space began back in 1996, when a clutch of benefactors put up $10 million as an ‘X Prize’—renamed the Ansari X Prize in 2004—for the first non-government entity to send a crew on a reusable craft into space twice within two weeks. The aim was not just to rouse the spirit of exploration, but also spur investment in a field with such big challenges of innovation that its spin-offs would eventually yield kaleidoscopic benefits for the rest of us left down here in the grasp of gravity. Indeed, several of the technologies we use in our daily life can be traced to breakthroughs achieved for grand ventures in need of whizzy new skills. As private businesses prosper in this fast-rising sector, breaking the monopoly of state-run missions, we could make advances in ways we can’t even picture yet. Joyrides for the rich, in other words, could fund a lot more to come. Once Elon Musk’s SpaceX makes its debut, the world will witness a three-way contest like none other. As of now, Branson, whose project had seemed a laggard in recent years, even as investors blew hot and cold over its prospects, has stolen a sudden lead.

In the final analysis, whether Virgin’s craft did or didn’t go into space should not make us split any hair. The arc of our planet would look no less beautiful on this side of Karman’s line or that. In any case, it’s a continuum. While fans of Star Trek will have a long wait for anything like on that TV show, what counts in this market is the core experience on offer. And this, in terms of bodily sensation, is about being afloat up there, not airless. So long as the feel of it is on the ticket and safety throws up no nasty surprises, it’ll probably sell.

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After Branson, Bezos Preps for Space Flight

VOA News 17 July, 2021 - 05:01am

Bezos vs. Branson: Whose space flight is cooler?

Reuters 17 July, 2021 - 05:01am

Virgin Galactic launches rocket, Branson to space

AP Archive 17 July, 2021 - 05:01am

Branson encourages kids, dreamers after space trip

AP Archive 17 July, 2021 - 05:01am

The Simpsons predicts ANOTHER major event with 2014 show showing Richard Branson space flight

Daily Mail 17 July, 2021 - 05:01am

By Owen Tonks For Mailonline

The Simpsons regularly stuns fans with its eerie ability to predict the future.

And the show appears to have done it once again with an image of Sir Richard Branson in spaceflight in a 2014 episode going viral this week after the businessman, 70, launched himself towards the stars on Sunday.

The entrepreneur successfully earned his astronaut wings after travelling to the edge of space on board a Virgin Galactic flight, making him the first spaceflight founder to travel to space on his own ship.

Eerie: The Simpsons correctly predicted Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic spaceflight in a 2014 episode before the businessman, 70, launched himself towards the stars on Sunday

Video of the magnate was beamed back to earth at the weekend as he experienced weightlessness and floated around the cabin of the vessel.

The footage was strangely similar to a scene in a 2014 episode of The Simpsons called The War of Art, the 15th episode of the show's 25th series.

In the animated programme, art forger Klaus Ziegler tells Lisa his 'forgeries give pleasure to people all over the world' before people looking at art in various locations are shown.

Eery: The Simpsons has been known to foresee major world events - from Donald Trump's presidency to the discovery of a three-eyed mutant fish to the erection of London's The Shard

Back to the future: Virgin Galactic footage was strangely similar to a scene in a 2014 episode of The Simpsons called The War of Art, the 15th episode of the show's 25th series

One person enjoying the faked art is Richard who can be seen resting with his hands behind his head as he floats in his spaceship while looking at some art on the wall.

The iconic TV show has been known to foresee major world events - from Donald Trump's presidency to the discovery of a three-eyed mutant fish to the erection of London skyscraper The Shard.

It has also correctly predicted the winners of World Cup and Super Bowl tournaments and showed Lady Gaga descending from the sky at the Super Bowl before her actual performance at the half time show in 2017 took place.  

Businessman Richard flew 53 miles above the surface of the Earth in the VSS Unity craft on Sunday.

Celebrations! Richard celebrated with champagne after touching down following his Virgin Galactic flight on Monday

Currently it is thought a ticket to the edge of space with Virgin Galactic, replicating Branson's trip will cost about $250,000 (£180,000). 

The space tourism pioneer says future vehicles will go faster, higher and longer and he also dreams of building a space station 'hotel' around the moon in the distant future.  

He said: 'Whether one day we will build a hotel off the moon, which is something that I've always dreamt of, or whether we'll leave that to my children to do, we'll have to see.

'But that's something which is yet another dream that, if I've got time in my life to do, that would be something I'd love to do one day.' 

The latest correct Simpsons prediction comes after social media users were left convinced that The Simpsons predicted Kamala Harris's vice presidency.

New beginnings: Richard flew 53 miles above the surface of the Earth in the VSS Unity craft on Sunday, making him the first businessman to fly to space on his own craft

On a roll: The Simpsons has also correctly predicted the winners of World Cup and Super Bowl tournaments and showed Lady Gaga descending from the sky at the Super Bowl before her actual 2017 performance

The 56-year-old attended the inauguration in a bright purple outfit by American designers Christopher John Rogers and Sergio Hudson, which she accessorized with a custom pearl necklace by Puerto Rican designer Wilfredo Rosado.

The ensemble bore a striking resemblance to one worn by Lisa Simpson in a 2000 episode of the cartoon — in which a grown-up Lisa is President of the United States.

In a 2000 episode called 'Bart to the Future,' the show looks forward to a future in which Lisa is President of the United states.

In a cabinet meeting, she says: 'We inherited quite the budget crunch from President Trump.'

Big moment: Social media users were left convinced that The Simpsons predicted Kamala Harris's vice presidency in January

Matchy-matchy: VP Harris wore a purple outfit with pearls to inauguration, just like Lisa Simpson wore in a 2000 episode in which she becomes president

When Trump was elected 16 years later, writer Dan Greaney told the Hollywood Reporter: 'It was a warning to America. That just seemed like the logical last stop before hitting bottom. It was pitched because it was consistent with the vision of America going insane.'

And creator Matt Groening told The Guardian: 'We predicted that he would be president back in 2000 — but [Trump] was of course the most absurd placeholder joke name that we could think of at the time, and that's still true. It's beyond satire.' 

Earlier, the 1993 episode '$pringfield' predicted the moment Roy Horn of the Las Vegas duo Siegfried and Roy was mauled by one of the performing tigers.

In the episode, German magicians named Gunter and Ernst perform at a casino and are in the middle of a routine when one of their tigers attack them.

Uncanny: In the episode, Lisa is president and refers to her predecessor, Trump — another surprising real-life event the show predicted

Ten years later in 2003, the real-life Roy was attacked on stage by a white Bengal tiger. The mauling, which nearly killed him, was big news and ended the pair's show.

Roy suffered severe blood loss and was partially paralyzed.   

In another Simpsons-event-turned-reality, in 2017, Disney announced a deal that it had acquired 21st Century Fox, a $71.3 billion merger that was completed earlier this year.

Funnily enough, the Simpsons had joked about the acquisition back in a 1998 episode. Homer is at the studio for what was then 20th Century Fox when he sees a sign for the company, which reads at the bottom: 'A Division of Walt Disney Co.'  

Then there was the 2010 episode Boy Meets Curl, which managed to predict pretty closely that Team USA's men's curling team would beat Sweden at the Olympics.

Seeing what's ahead: In 2017, Disney announced a deal that it had acquired 21st Century Fox — and the Simpsons had joked about the acquisition back in a 1998 episode

Ra ra ooh la la! In a 2012 episode, a Gaga lookalike performs in Springfield, suspended in the air in a bodysuit and tall boots — much like the real Lady Gaga at the 2017 Super Bowl

In the episode, Marge and Homer compete on the US's mixed doubles curling team at Olympics held in Vancouver, miraculously winning. In 2018, the US men's curling team did in fact beat Sweden at the Winter Games in PyeongChang.

In an eye-roller of a prediction, the 1990 episode Itchy and Scratchy and Marge has Springfield residents calling out Michelangelo's statue of David for being obscene in its nudity. 

As Business Insider points out, Russian protesters had the same issue with the statue in July of 2016 when a copy was erected in St. Petersburg.

Also hailing back to the early '90s, a 1991 episode showed Ringo Starr of The Beatles replying to decades-old fan mail.

Over 20 years later in September 2013, two British Beatles fans received a letter from Paul McCartney in response to one they sent 50 years before.  

USA! The 2010 episode Boy Meets Curl, which managed to predict pretty closely that Team USA's men's curling team would beat Sweden at the Olympics

One of the more shocking instances of life imitating art, though, has to be Homer's near-prediction for the equation for the mass of the Higgs boson particle, also known as the 'God particle.'

Homer wrote in on a blackboard in the 1998 episode 'The Wizard of Evergreen Terrace,' and physicist Dr. Simon Singh told The Independent that it's actually pretty accurate — even though scientists didn't discover proof of the Higgs boson until 2013.

'If you work it [the equation] out, you get the mass of a Higgs boson that's only a bit larger than the nano-mass of a Higgs boson actually is,' he said.

Despite all the correct 'predictions' over the years, writer Al Jean insisted they were just coincidences, and notes that in decades of content, some jokes are bound to become reality. 

'If you make enough predictions then 10 per cent will turn out to be right,' he told Radio 1 Newsbeat.  

Businessman Richard flew 53 miles above the surface of the Earth in the VSS Unity craft on Sunday.

Currently it is thought a ticket to the edge of space with Virgin Galactic, replicating Branson's trip will cost about $250,000 (£180,000). 

The space tourism pioneer says future vehicles will go faster, higher and longer and he also dreams of building a space station 'hotel' around the moon in the distant future.  

He said: 'Whether one day we will build a hotel off the moon, which is something that I've always dreamt of, or whether we'll leave that to my children to do, we'll have to see.

'But that's something which is yet another dream that, if I've got time in my life to do, that would be something I'd love to do one day.' 

Math fun! One of the more shocking instances has to be Homer's near-prediction for the equation for the mass of the Higgs boson particle

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Why Virgin Galactic Shares Fell This Week | The Motley Fool

Motley Fool 15 July, 2021 - 01:34pm

Founded in 1993 by brothers Tom and David Gardner, The Motley Fool helps millions of people attain financial freedom through our website, podcasts, books, newspaper column, radio show, and premium investing services.

Virgin Galactic Holdings (NYSE:SPCE) completed a historic milestone last Sunday, successfully launching founder Richard Branson into space. But investors reacted by running for the exits, with the stock off 35% for the week as of 2 p.m. EDT Thursday.

Call this the cosmic edition of popular Wall Street saying, "Buy the rumor, sell the news." Branson's flight into space happened nearly a year after it was originally planned, due to a combination of COVID-related delays and some testing setbacks. The stock fell significantly at times last year due to those setbacks, but had gained more than 200% in the six weeks leading up to the July 11 flight.

Richard Branson (second from left) and the mission specialists ahead of the July 11 flight. Image source: Virgin Galactic.

The flight was an unqualified success, and provided a great boost to Virgin Galactic's marketing effort. But the company on Monday filed to take advantage of the stock run up by selling $500 million worth of additional shares. Secondary offerings tend to be near-term negative on a stock because they mean each share owns a tiny bit less of the company.

Wall Street also sounded a cautious tone. Bank of America analyst Ronald Epstein kept an underperform rating on the stock even after the launch, noting that the flight was only a test and that Virgin Galactic has not yet announced when commercial service will begin. The net effect was that as the enthusiasm about the flight began to fade investors were more focused on the challenges ahead.

Since going public via a special purpose acquisition company, Virgin Galactic has traded more on sentiment than fundamentals, which makes sense since for most of that time the company has generated little to no revenue. We are slowly growing closer to a point where that is no longer the case, and investors can begin to find out the answers to thorny questions concerning how big the total market is for six-figure flights into space.

At various points so far in 2021 Virgin Galactic shares have been up 120%-plus (twice) and down 50%. I'd expect more volatility to continue in the months to come as the testing process is completed and Virgin Galactic moves toward the beginning of regular service. For investors who believe in the potential, fasten your seatbelt and be ready for a bumpy ride.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor will renew at the then current list price. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

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