Jeff Bezos has achieved his childhood dream of becoming an astronaut
The Amazon founder - who is the world's wealthiest man - and his crew have landed safely back on earth following a successful launch by his private spaceflight company Blue Origin from West Texas on Tuesday (20.07.21)
22 July 2021
The 57-year-old billionaire flew himself and his younger brother Mark, as well as 18-year-old Dutchman Oliver Daemen and 82-year-old aerospace pioneer Wally Funk - who became the youngest and oldest people to travel to space respectively - in the New Shepard rocket.
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The capsule separated from its rocket around two minutes into the flight before continuing upwards towards the Karman Line, the most recognised boundary of space, 100km in the air.
The group spent around 11 minutes travelling up to space and were able to get out of their seats and float around the cabin for around four minutes during their flight before parachuting back down.
Wally could be heard admiring the views on board as she exclaimed: "Oh my word, look at the world."
After the capsule touched down, Jeff said: "Astronaut Bezos: Best day ever!"
Oliver, who was Blue Origin's first paying passenger, replaced an anonymous person who had bid $28 million for a seat on the flight but later deferred their place "due to scheduling conflicts", despite being aware of the flight's scheduled date before making their bid.
Bob Smith, Blue Origin's chief ex ecutive, previously explained: "The winner of Blue Origin’s auction, who has asked to remain anonymous at this time, has chosen to fly on a future mission due to scheduling conflicts. We thank the auction winner for their generous support of Club for the Future and are honoured to welcome Oliver to fly with us. This marks the beginning of commercial operations and Oliver represents a new generation of people who will help us build a road to space."