Space tourism: the first civilian-only mission to space is a success

The debut of space tourism took place off the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, in Florida, on September 18, 2021. Elon Musk’s mission was completed: a crew of only four non-professional civilians reached space, boarding Musk’s SpaceX and being able to see the Earth from above like never before.

It will also be true that the process of reaching space has become more democratic, including non-professionals, however, made an experience that’s not within everyone’s reach.

The space mission was headed by billionaire businessman Jared Isaacman. CEO and founder of Shift4 Payments, Isaacman was the creator of the space initiative to raise funds for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, and which has invested tens of millions of dollars in the project. The flight has been named “Inspiration4” in honor of the four values ​​to which St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is linked: leadership, hope, generosity and prosperity.

In addition to raising funds for the hospital, the purpose of space flight was, according to the mission’s official website, to usher in “a new era of human spaceflight and exploration.”

The SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule was named Resilience and Isaacman, a true space fanatic, practiced as a pilot by amassing more than 6,000 hours of piloting various aircraft. 

The three people accompanying Isaacman were aerospace engineer Chris Sembroski, communications specialist Sian Proctor and medical assistant Hayley Arceneaux, who at 29 has become the youngest American to travel to space.

The rocket took off from the Kennedy Space Center, and spent three days in orbit around the Earth, at a height of 575 kilometers.

“Inspiration4 is the realization of a lifelong dream and a step toward a future in which anyone can venture out and explore the stars,” Isaacman said, recalling being in kindergarten at Wilson Elementary School in New Jersey looking at high-resolution picture books of the space shuttle,  “I did tell my kindergarten teacher I would go to space someday, and she said she’d be watching,” Isaacman added. He has given a unique emotion not only to himself and his companions, but also to those who have remained on Earth to watch.

According to some rumors, even actor Tom Cruise would dream of reaching space. While nothing is yet certain, there is a possibility that Cruise will actually do it for his next film “Top Gun: Maverick”, expected to be released in May 2022.

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