It is planned that the crew of four people will spend about three days on the flight.
Jared Isaacman, founder and CEO of Shift4 Payments, an e-commerce company, will lead a crew of newcomers on the flight, which is expected to last three days – from the launch at Cape Canaveral to the landing in the Atlantic Ocean.
The 38-year-old technology magnate paid an unspecified, but presumably very large sum to another billionaire, the owner of SpaceX, Elon Musk, for delivering himself and three other specially selected crew members to orbit aboard SpaceX’s Crew Dragon ship.
The spacecraft will be launched into orbit using a reusable Falcon 9 rocket, also developed by Musk’s company. A 24-hour window is selected to start, which will open at 20:00 on Wednesday, U.S. East coast time. This window may be narrowed or even shifted due to the weather.
The flight into orbit, called Inspiration4, was conceived by Isaakman in order, first of all, to draw attention to one of his favorite areas of charitable activity – the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, which is the leading children’s cancer center in the country. He personally promised to transfer $ 100 million to the institute.
However, a successful flight will also mark a new era of commercial space tourism. Several companies will compete for rich customers who are willing to pay a small fortune to experience the delight of superrsonic flight, weightlessness, and the visual beauty of space.
SpaceX is undoubtedly the most established player in the growing constellation of commercial rocket enterprises. The company has repeatedly delivered cargo and astronauts to the International Space Station by order of NASA.
Rival companies Virgin Galactic and Blue Origin recently sent their first space tourists into space, including their billionaire founders Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos.
But these two high-profile flights were suborbital and took only a few minutes.
The SpaceX flight is designed to deliver four passengers to a place where no civilian crew has ever gone before – to near-Earth orbit.
They will orbit the Earth every 90 minutes. The height of their orbit will be 575 kilometers, which is further than the orbit of the ISS or even the Hubble telescope.