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‘The first human flight’: Jeff Bezos sends himself to space

·2-min read
A man sits in a seat inside the Blue Origin space capsule. Jeff Bezos speaks at an event.
Jeff Bezos will be onboard the first manned Blue Origin space flight (Source: Blue Origin/AAP)

Billionaire founder of Amazon, Jeff Bezos announced he is going to space on 20 July 2021, when the first manned Blue Origin flight takes off.

Blue Origin is Bezos’ space exploration company, taking on the likes of Elon Musk’s Space X and Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic.

The three billionaires have started their own space race, with Bezos and Musk looking to set up human life on other planets and Branson looking to make space travel more mainstream.

Bezos announced his intention to board the first manned Blue Origin flight on his Instagram where he said his brother would also be joining him.

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“To see the Earth from space, that changes you, changes your relationship with this planet, with humanity,” Bezos said in the video.

“It's one Earth. I want to go on this flight because it's a thing I've wanted to do all my life. It's an adventure. It's a big deal for me.”

Bezos is currently auctioning off the one remaining seat available on the flight for someone who isn't part of the crew.

Bidding has already reached $4.5 million (US$3.5 million) and the current silent auction will become a live bidding event on June 12.

Blue Origin said the winning bid will be donated to its own foundation, Club for the Future, to inspire future generations to pursue careers in STEM (*science, technology, engineering and maths) and help “invent the future of life in space”.

The launch vehicle, called The New Shepard, is named after the first American astronaut to fly to space 60 years ago, Alan Shepard.

The rocket has flown 15 successful consecutive missions to space and back above the Kármán Line where it has tested the flight program and all safety systems.

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