Blue Origin Launches Its First Crewed Flight Since 2022

Aboard was Ed Dwight, the first Black astronaut candidate.

Tech & Gadgets
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Blue Origin has been at the forefront of pushing forward “space tourism.” While the space agency certainly has its competitors – like SpaceX, for starters – no other company is as solely focused on sending paying civilians to space.

On Sunday, Blue Origin pulled off its first crewed mission in nearly two years. The NS-25, a space tourist mission, took off from West Texas using its New Shepard rocket. The 11-minute flight allowed the six passengers to briefly unbuckle their seatbelts and experience zero gravity before returning to Earth.

Among the six was 90-year-old Ed Dwight, who had famously been selected by President John F. Kennedy as the first Black man to train in the Air Force program from which NASA selects its astronauts. Although not selected to join NASA – a controversial moment in history – he went on to become a prolific sculptor.

“Fantastic! A life-changing experience. Everyone needs to do this!” Dwight said as he stepped out of the spaceship. “I didn’t know I needed this in my life, but now I need it in my life.”

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