Space tourists descend into the Atlantic Ocean after three days in orbit • The Register

The crew of the space tourist who spent three days orbiting Earth in a SpaceX Dragon capsule returned to our planet in one piece.

The gang, dubbed Inspiration4, splashed into the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Florida on Saturday just after 1900 EST (2300 UTC). They were checked by medics and transported by helicopter to land.

Splashdown … The Inspiration4 capsule returns to Earth. Source: Inspiration4

If you want to relive their descent, there was a livestream here.

On Wednesday, the crew took off from Kennedy Space Center Launch Complex 39A on top of a SpaceX Falcon 9. They reached an altitude of 363 miles (585 kilometers), farther than the International Space Station.

The team – Jared Isaacman, Dr Sian Proctor, Hayley Arceneaux, and Christopher Sembroski – effectively completed the first fully civilian human spaceflight in orbit. None of them were traditional professional astronauts, and the capsule was largely automated, allowing them to observe our home world from a bubble-shaped window. SpaceX hopes to launch up to six private flights per year and will go into orbit for NASA.

The trip was intended to raise $ 200 million for St Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, which specializes in, among other things, the fight against cancer. Inspiration4 said it raised nearly $ 154 million, and SpaceX supremo Elon Musk added that he would donate $ 50 million, taking them above their goal.

On the radio, SpaceX Mission Control told the crew that their journey “showed the world that space is for all of us.”

Isaacman, the 38-year-old billionaire payments processing system mogul who paid tens of millions of dollars to cover the cost of the getaway and enjoys flying military jets in his spare time, replied: “It was a hell of a trick for us. “

Pictured above, alongside Isaacman, is Proctor, 51, a geology professor at a community college who, due to her role in the trip, is the first black woman to pilot a spatialship; Arceneaux, 29, assistant physician from St Jude, and the youngest American in space, the youngest in sustained orbit, and the first with a prosthesis; and Sembroski, 42, a reliability engineer at Lockheed Martin, who was seen calmly watching the Spaceballs movie on a tablet before take off.

Proctor won an online entrepreneurship competition hosted by Isaacman for a spot in the capsule; Sembroski received his ticket from a friend who won it in a raffle; and Arceneaux, a cancer survivor herself, was chosen for her connection to the hospital.

The team trained for six months for the flight, learning what to do if something went wrong. While in orbit, they performed medical tests, played music and created works of art, spoke to patients in St Jude, rang the closing bell for the New York Stock Exchange, and placed the very first sports betting from space.

And they spoke to Tom Cruise, who also wants to orbit with SpaceX. And Bono from U2. ®



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