A rocket is poised to blast into orbit with no professional astronauts on board for the first time in 60-years of human spaceflight. SpaceX’s first private flight will only carry four tourists on a three-day trip circling Earth. Tomorrow’s flight will be led by a 38-year-old entrepreneur who’s bankrolling the entire trip. He’s taking two sweepstakes winners with him, along with a healthcare worker who survived childhood cancer. They’ll soar higher than the International Space Station, aiming for an altitude of 575 kilometres above earth.
SpaceX is targeting a five-hour launch on Wednesday, September 15, opening at 8:02 p.m. EDT (Thursday, September 16 at 00:02 UTC) for launch of the Inspiration4 mission – the world’s first all-civilian human spaceflight to orbit – aboard SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon spacecraft from historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Approximately three days after liftoff, Dragon and the Inspiration4 crew will return to Earth and splash down at one of several possible landing sites off the Florida coast.
SpaceX’s webcast for launch of the Inspiration4 mission will go live ~4 hours before liftoff.
Inspiration4 is commanded by Jared Isaacman, founder and CEO of Shift4 Payments and an accomplished pilot and adventurer. Joining him are Medical Officer Hayley Arceneaux, a physician assistant at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital® and pediatric cancer survivor; Mission Specialist Chris Sembroski, an Air Force veteran and aerospace data engineer; and Mission Pilot Dr. Sian Proctor, a geoscientist, entrepreneur, and trained pilot.
RAISE $200M FOR ST JUDE
The Inspiration4 mission is part of Jared’s ambitious fundraising goal to give hope to all kids with cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Visit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to learn how you can help the Inspiration4 crew reach their $200M fundraising goal.
STUDY THE HUMAN BODY IN SPACE
During their multi-day journey in orbit, the Inspiration4 crew will conduct scientific research designed to advance human health on Earth and during future long-duration spaceflights.
Photo Credit: SpaceX