Space is a private matter. Or at least it is for those who do not have money problems, since four cents are not enough to build a spacecraft or a rocket. Infinite billionaires like Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson have invested a lot of their money to be able to look at the world from above, unlike the quieter Bill Gates. And now this desire has turned into a small race in which everyone will probably win: who will finish first, who farther away, who crosses more complementary milestones.
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On who will finish first in the entrepreneur-friendly space there is a favorite: Richard Branson. The tycoon behind Virgin, also seen in Formula 1 as team owner and sponsor, has announced the space mission that concerns him. It will take place on 11 July 2021: Virgin Galactic will take it into orbit with the SpaceShipTwo space plane, which will take off in the morning live on TV from the base in New Mexico, attached to the White Knight mother aircraft. On board, in addition to Branson, will be three Virgin Galactic engineers and two pilots. White Knight will carry the Unity superjet up to 15 kilometers high; later the rocket will reach 80 kilometers, giving Branson a full four minutes in zero gravity, before gently descending to Earth.
“To decide the winner of the star wars between Scrooge could however be the Var. That is the Guinness judges called to decide where the Space really begins. The Federal Aviation Administration and the US Air Force set the border with the atmosphere at an altitude of 80 kilometers. According to international conventions, however, it is on the so-called Kármán line, 100 kilometers high, where only Mr. Amazon’s spacecraft will arrive. “Best of luck to SpaceShipTwo, but this is not a space trip,” said Bob Smith, Blue Origin’s number one. […] Virgin Galactic is worth 11 billion on Wall Street, expects to cash in a billion a year by bringing tourists to Space in not too long time (expected ticket price 250 thousand dollars). Bezos’ Blue Origin has 500 million contracts with the US army and rich orders from NASA. Between the two quarrels, however, it is the third who enjoys. That is the usual Elon Musk who with SpaceX is much ahead of the rivals in the space economy business. The company – valued at 74 billion – has put 1,500 satellites of the Starlink constellation, the tycoon’s satellite internet, into orbit. Musk, as always, aims higher than anyone: he wants to build a city on Mars and move there“, Writes Repubblica.
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“The announcement of Virgin Galactic, which has developed a spacecraft capable of performing suborbital flights, has raised the shares of Sir Richard’s company and sparked the imagination of those who saw in the challenge between the two tycoons a replay in the world of 0 , 01% of the great race between the USA and the USSR for the conquest of space. Except for twists and turns, the take off of Bezos in Texas with Blue Origin’s New Shepard spacecraft is scheduled for July 20: a symbolic date because the 52nd anniversary of the Apollo 11 landing on the Moon. Technically, July 11 will not be a trip for tourists: a crew of two pilots, Dave Mackay and Michael Masucci, plus three company employees, will board the Vss Unity shuttle, departing from Spaceport America in New Mexico. The tycoon’s task, however, will be to test the experience of civilian customers once the commercial launches have started seriously“, remembers the Resto del Carlino.