Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket is counting down for its first crewed flight into space on July 20 with founder Jeff Bezos and three other passengers.

New Shepard’s first crewed flight launch will be broadcast beginning at 7:30 a.m. EDT (1130 GMT) at BlueOrigin.com and Space.com.

Bezos, the former CEO of Amazon, Mark Bezos, Wally Funk, and an as-yet-unidentified person who paid $28 million (roughly Rs. 210 crores) for a spot aboard the spacecraft launch from a West Texas site.

The company is planned for an 11-minute ride to the edge of space on Tuesday.

New Shepard Flight:-

The New Shepard is a 60-foot-tall and fully autonomous rocket-and-capsule combo that cannot be piloted from inside the spacecraft.

Blue Origin’s six-passenger New Shepard travels more than 62 miles (100 km) past the Kármán line, the widely recognized height where space begins. Virgin Galactic’s flight reached 53 miles (86km) above Earth.

A seasoned astronaut would provide a calming presence for civilian crew members as New Shepard blasts off at speeds upwards of 2,200 miles (3,540km) per hour, the sources added.

The crew is set to include only civilians and none of Blue Origin’s employees or staff astronauts, three people familiar with the company’s plans told Reuters.

“One of the main goals of the New Shepard mission is to demonstrate that going to suborbital space is perfectly safe for the average person,” Caceres said. “So there is a benefit to having as many average people on these flights as possible.”

The license from the FAA to fly humans, approved Monday night, is valid until August and came after a meticulous review of New Shepard’s hardware and software.

The New Shepard has performed 15 successful test flights, including a rehearsal where astronauts simulated entry and exit procedures before and after the launch.

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