A little Christmas present for the astronomically-inclined, the James Webb telescope successfully launched into space from Korou Spaceport in Guiana. The ten-billion dollar instrument will see further into the universe– and back in time– than has been previously possible.
Another magnate will soar into space this month. Jeff Bezos, best known as the founder of Amazon, will launch July 20 on board a crewed New Shepard, built by his company, Blue Origin. The passengers will include Oliver Daemen (18) and former “Mercury Thirteen” candidate Wally Funk (82), who will become, respectively, the youngest and oldest people in space to date.
Virgin Galactic founder Richard Branson will launch Sunday, July 11 at 9am 10:30 EST aboard the VSS Unity, the first Virgin Galactic flight to carry a full crew. The event, intended in part to show the viability of space tourism, will go full media circus, with Stephen Colbert hosting and Khalid debuting a new song at the landing site.
SpaceX’s current (or replayed, depending on when you watch) activity:
SpaceX has has announced the full (hypothetical) crew of the first “all-civilian” space mission, scheduled to launch next September. Hopefully the launch will occur without too many complications and prove an Inspiration for future space exploration.
Lunar exploration has been in the news lately, with China’s Chang’e-5 capsule returning with rock samples, and ambitious American plans to send Artemis II around our moon (with the first ever Canadian on the mission) in 2023. If successful, it will represent the first time since the final Apollo mission that humans will fly so far from home. Artemis III is even more ambitious: humanity will return to the lunar surface.