Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for WIRED25
That’s one small step for Bezos…
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced Monday he’ll be flying to space this summer on the first human flight of his company Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket ship, CNN reports. Bezos will be joined by his brother, Mark Bezos, on the flight that’s set for July 20.
“I want to go on this flight because it’s the thing I’ve wanted to do all my life,” Bezos said in a video on Instagram. “It’s an adventure. It’s a big deal for me.”
The Amazon chief executive said he invited his brother “because we’re closest friends,” and Mark Bezos in the Instagram video described going on the flight as a “remarkable opportunity.” The New Shepard can carry six passengers, and bidding for a seat on the July flight is underway, with the current highest bid being $2.8 million. During the flight, “the capsule carrying the passengers will separate from its booster” at about 250,000 feet, and “soon after, the astronauts will get to unbuckle and experience weightlessness for about three minutes before returning to earth,” The New York Times previously reported.
“New Shepard has flown 15 successful consecutive missions to space and back above the Kármán Line through a meticulous and incremental flight program to test its multiple redundant safety systems,” Blue Origin said in May. “Now, it’s time for astronauts to climb onboard.”
This flight will take place 15 days after Bezos officially steps down as Amazon’s CEO, and he’s now set to become the “first of the billionaire space tycoons to experience a ride aboard the rocket technology that he’s poured millions into developing,” CNN writes — notably meaning he’ll be getting to space before SpaceX CEO Elon Musk.