This young cancer survivor will travel to space 0:39
(Source CNN) – After the suborbital space trips of Virgin Galactic and Blue Origin, SpaceX is preparing to go to space.
SpaceX’s Inspiration4 mission is scheduled to fly no earlier than September 15. The launch will take place from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida at a date and time that has not yet been confirmed.
SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft will orbit planet Earth every 90 minutes along a custom flight path. After approximately three days in orbit and reaching a maximum height of 540 kilometers above Earth, Dragon will re-enter Earth’s atmosphere for a water landing off the coast of Florida.
The Inspiration4 mission
The first mission to space was named Inspiration4 in honor of the four civilians who will make the trip to space.
“Inspiration4’s goal is to inspire humanity to support St. Jude here on Earth while simultaneously seeing new possibilities for manned spaceflight,” said Jared Isaacman, founder and CEO of Shift4 Payments, in a statement from SpaceX Isaacman is financing the multi-million dollar trip to space aboard a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule, which could be the first orbital flight fully manned by non-astronauts.
“Each of these outstanding crew members embodies the best of humanity, and I am honored to guide them on this historic and purposeful mission and adventure of a lifetime,” said Isaacman.
Isaacman indicated that this mission mission, called Inspiration4, with the “4” referring to the number of crew members, “is the realization of a lifelong dream and a step towards a future in which anyone can venture and explore. the stars”.
The Shift4 Payments CEO said he wanted the mission to also mark a “historic moment to inspire humanity while helping fight childhood cancer,” and pledged to donate $ 100 million to the hospital as part of an effort to raise US $ 100 million. $ 200 million more for investigative work.
Who are the crew
In addition to Isaacman, Hayley Arceneaux, 29, a cancer survivor and physician assistant at St. Jude Children’s Hospital in Tennessee, is also on the crew. Arceneaux will become the youngest American to visit space and the first person with a prosthesis to travel to space.
“Until this mission, astronauts had to be physically perfect and now things are changing,” Arceneaux told CNN Business. “It’s just amazing for the performance and to be able to show cancer patients what is possible.”
The other two confirmed seats will be occupied by Dr. Sian Proctor, professor of geosciences and specialist in scientific communication; and by Christopher Sembroski, advisor to the Space Camp educational camp and former US Air Force military man.
The Dragon ship has seating for up to seven passengers, so more people could join the trip. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk, who has previously expressed interest in joining a SpaceX mission, told reporters in early 2021 that he will not be on the Inspiration4 mission.
“One day I’ll be on a flight, but not this one,” he said.
About the Dragon Crew
The Inspiration4 mission will make use of a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule, the vehicle designed to transport NASA astronauts to and from the International Space Station (ISS), which made its first manned flights last year.
While the spacecraft is designed primarily for NASA use, the Crew Dragon remains the private property of SpaceX, allowing the company to sell seats on board to space tourists, private investigators, and anyone willing to pay the price. of approximately $ 50 million for a seat. Isaacman, who is paying for all four seats in Inspiration 4, hasn’t said how much he paid for the mission.
The Crew Dragon spacecraft has the ability to carry seven passengers, to and from Earth orbit. The capsule has a height of 8.1 meters, a diameter of 4 meters and a load capacity of 165 kilograms, which will be distributed among the essential elements of the crew as well as the scientific team for research and microgravity experimentation.
The crew will conduct experiments designed to expand knowledge of the universe. “Inspiration4 is committed to allocating the maximum possible mass to this valuable research, providing access to space for inspiring projects that would otherwise be unable to overcome the high barriers of traditional space-based research,” reads the website of The mission.
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With information from Jackie Wattles.