Space-X to Launch First All Civilian Space Mission – And You Could Be On It
Elon Musk's Space X are launching the first ever all civilian mission and members of the general public can now enter a competition that will see them orbit the Earth.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s Space-X has hit the headlines once more following its announcement that the “world’s first all-civilian mission” will take place in late 2021. The news will be music to the ears of many wannabe Neil Armstrongs who have previously only dreamt of such possibilities.
Musk himself will not be on the flight with the proposed 4-man mission to be commanded by Jared Isaacman, millionaire founder and CEO of Shift4 Payments. Although this may seem an odd choice, despite his business rooted in the world of eCommerce and payments, Isaacman also happens to be an accomplished pilot. The 37-year-old is planning to fill the three seats alongside him to civillian crew members who, according to SpaceX, “represent the mission pillars of leadership, hope, generosity and prosperity,” with each of the three seats representing one of those qualities.
The mission, which has been given the moniker Inspiration4, won’t simply be a jolly for Isaacman. As a passionate philanthropist the Shift4 Payments CEO will be using it to raise funds for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Isaacman has decided to give two of the four seats to St. Jude, including one which will be reserved for a frontline healthcare worker based at the children’s hospital who is deemed to epitomise hope.
With hope filling the first seat, SpaceX have also announced that the second seat will represent generosity and it will go to one lucky member of the public who will be picked through an online competition running throughout February. It is expected that the member of public highlight their generosity by making a donation to St Jude.
The final seat – prosperity – is open to any businessmen or women and entrepreneurs that currently or have used the Shift4Shop eCommerce platform, owned by Isaacman. These hopeful entrants will also be required to post their inspirational business story on social media.
Isaacman said, “Inspiration4 is the realization of a lifelong dream and a step towards a future in which anyone can venture out and explore the stars, I appreciate the tremendous responsibility that comes with commanding this mission, and I want to use this historic moment to inspire humanity while helping to tackle childhood cancer here on Earth.”
NASA have already approved the mission allowing planning to continue apace, with SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft earmarked as the vessel taking the fortunate four into orbit. The Falcon 9 rocket launch will take place from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Once in space the Dragon will complete multiple orbit of Earth over a period of two to four days. The spacecraft will then re-enter the atmosphere bringing the civilian astronauts back to Earth with a soft water landing off the coast of Florida.
All four crew members will undergo specialised training in the same vein as fully qualified astronauts, preparing themselves for flight with preparation on orbital mechanics and zero gravity drills, as well as full mission simulations. Once it is deemed the crew are ready for space, the mission will proceed in the final quarter of 2021.
You can now enter the competitions to secure your place on Inspiration4 which began on 1 February and will run through till 28 February. You can enter on the Inspiration4 website here and once the competition concludes the winners will be chosen by an independent judging panel. Could you be part of the first all-civilian mission to space?