Blue Origin Launches And Lands Its First Space Tourism Rocket Of The Year, With Human Flights In Sight
Blue Origin, Jeff Bezos’s private spaceflight company, hit a milestone last week by successfully launching and landing its New Shepard vehicle. The latest mission, NS-14, pushes Blue Origin one step closer to human space tourism. The mission launched on January 14 in West Texas from the company’s launch site. The 18-meter rocket launched the capsule into the boundary of space. The capsule consists of several seats for humans that will eventually be available for purchase at the price of roughly $200,000 per ticket.
The capsule’s maximum altitude is 107 kilometers and aims to bring the experience of weightlessness to future space tourists. Seven minutes after launching, the capsule and booster descended to Earth, utilizing fin technology to guide it. Although the event was not the first time Blue Origin’s New Shepard vehicle has flown before, it marks the first time the rocket has successfully completed a flight with upgrades resembling how the shuttle will look during human space flight. These upgrades include environmental features such as temperature regulation, crew display panels, speakers, and microphones with push-to-talk functions at every seat.