SpaceX’s All-Civilian Inspiration 4 crew is ready for launch

“Acknowledging the responsibility we have in the world, we are working to raise the largest amount of funds possible,” Isaacson said at a press briefing on Tuesday.

For Wakovich, the heavy social media element of the election process, while understandable from SpaceX’s perspective, can be problematic. “We are all very aware of the way social media exacerbates existing prejudices, where people adhere to gender and racial norms,” they say.

And while official astronauts are no longer the only space travelers, tickets on today’s private space flights seem to be reserved for rich people or friends who depend on their generosity, Beam says: “Space is a very elite place; it’s just that the elite type is changing.

Yet, although the spacecraft is often described as “all-civilian,” most participants are not like NASA’s astronauts who have gone through the traditional trajectory process. “Isaacman, Sembrowski and Proctor have all dedicated decades of their lives to aviation and space-related professional development and experience, so they have not flinched,” said Katherine Denning, an anthropologist at York University in Toronto and a space economics researcher at WIRED. Wrote.

Arcenaux has less experience than the others, but they have all been training for the mission since March. “It’s a very intense training program,” said Scott “Kid” Potit, who conducts Inspiration 4 missions with Ericsson. “They have gone through a few hours of simulator training, including the operation of the Dragon Capsule. These included fighter jet training with G-Force experience and climbing Mount Rainier. It’s a challenging environment and situation, and they did nothing but succeed. ”

Arsenic’s affiliation is no longer considered a barrier to spacecraft: this spring, the European Space Agency began recruiting physically challenged astronauts for the first time; Some astronomers think that prosthetics can be convenient in zero-G.

For NASA, encouraging a growing aerospace industry was part of the plan, especially since the shuttle program ended in 2011. NASA invested in commercial crew suppliers a decade ago – with SpaceX and Boeing expecting the companies to be able to deliver astronauts into space and possibly launch others into space. In May 2020, SpaceX’s Crew Dragon took two NASA astronauts to the ISS, and brought them back home, for public-public-private missions.

Now, in 2021, four separate private orbit missions will be scheduled for next year or more, including SpaceX and Houston-based space infrastructure companies SpaceX and Axiom Space. Alexander MacDonald, chief economist at NASA, said: “This is why we’ve undertaken the commercial crew program, to be able to expand space access to others and nurture the beginnings of a new industry.” “Now we hope to enter the stage of maturity of commercial human spacecraft.”

SpaceX’s human spaceflight chief Benji Reid sees this as the first stage of space travel that is becoming much more common. “The long-term vision is that the spacecraft will become like an airplane. Buy tickets and go,” he said at a press briefing on Tuesday. . “

During their time in orbit, the Inspiration 4 crew will be released from gravity, and seeing our own little world from far above them will be a life-changing experience. Unlike NASA astronauts, they will have their own personal goals and interests while in orbit. Film adaptation of Carl Sagan’s novel CommunicationThe protagonist, starring Jodie Foster, looks at an alien for the first time and says in surprise: “They should have sent a poet.” Referring to Proctor, Mango said: “Now they will.”

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