A fortune for a ten minute flight with Jeff Bezos: A seat for the first manned space flight of a new space capsule from Blue Origin was auctioned for 28 million US dollars. It was initially unclear who the successful bidder was at the auction on Saturday. The flight with the “New Shepard” rocket is scheduled to start on July 20th. Amazon boss Jeff Bezos, who founded Blue Origin, wants to take a seat in the capsule together with his brother Mark.
Identity of the successful bidder still unknown
After launch, the spaceship is expected to accelerate to more than 3700 kilometers per hour within two minutes. Weightlessness should start after three minutes, before the capsule reaches a height of more than 100 kilometers above the earth. For comparison: the International Space Station ISS flies 400 kilometers above the earth’s surface. After their soaring, the astronauts are supposed to re-enter the earth’s atmosphere and “New Shepard” is supposed to land in the Texas desert, slowed down by large parachutes.
The auction on Saturday started with a bid of 4.8 million and quickly broke the 20 million mark in the dramatically staged auction. The final bid ended up being $ 28 million – about 45,000 per second of flight. A total of four people should take a seat in the capsule on July 20. The identity of the successful bidder is to be revealed in the coming weeks and a fourth person is also to be determined.
Blue Origin last tested the astronaut capsule in mid-April. It reached an altitude of around 105 kilometers before returning to Earth. For the first time, employees of the company also rehearsed some astronaut tasks before take-off and after landing. The actual test flight, however, remained unmanned – the “New Shepard” has never flown with people on board.