Watch Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin NS-19 Live: First Six Passengers
The NS-19 capsule returns with the crew over the Texas desert.
Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin launched its New Shepard rocket for the sixth time this year on Saturday, a mission that marked the first time the company has launched six passengers at a time.
Called NS-19, this New Shepard mission carried a crew of two guests and four clients: astronaut Alan Shepard’s daughter Laura Shepard Churchley, TV host and NFL star Michael Strahan, industry executive space Dylan Taylor, investor Evan Dick, venture capitalist Lane Bess and his son Cameron Bess.
The NS-19 crew take a look at their trip to space. From left to right: Laura Shepard Churchley, Michael Strahan, Evan Dick, Lane Bess, Cameron Bess and Dylan Taylor.
The NS-19 mission brought Blue Origin to 14 people launched into space in 2021. The year saw a wave of private manned spaceflight activity, with three US companies bringing passengers past the edge of the l ‘space or up to orbit.
The rocket was launched from Blue Origin’s private facility in West Texas and reached over 100,000 kilometers (or over 340,000 feet above sea level) before returning safely to Earth a few minutes later. . From start to finish, the launch took about 11 minutes. The crew experienced approximately three minutes of weightlessness.
New Shepard’s capsule accelerated to more than three times the speed of sound to pass the 80 kilometer (roughly 50 mile) limit that the United States uses to mark the edge of space. The capsule was piloted autonomously, without a human pilot, and returned under a parachute set to land in the Texas desert.
The New Shepard rocket thruster is reusable and returned and landed on a concrete slab near the launch site for the fifth time.
The company also flies New Shepard on cargo missions, like the one in August, which carries research payloads into the capsule.
This photo provided by Blue Origin, Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket sits on a space airport launch pad near Van Horn, Texas on Tuesday, July 20, 2021.
Blue Origin | Reuters