Virgin Galactic simply gave out two free rides to the ultimate frontier.
The spaceflight firm and the charity fundraising platform Omaze introduced right now (Nov. 24) that Keisha S., a well being and power coach from the Caribbean nation of Antigua and Barbuda, has gained two seats aboard Virgin Galactic’s VSS Unity space aircraft.
That’s a $900,000 worth; Virgin Galactic is at present promoting seats for $450,000 apiece.
Keisha plans to fly to space and again together with her daughter, an astrophysics pupil.
“I’ve always had a lifelong love of flying and a fascination with space, and this is truly a dream come true for me,” Keisha said in a statement. “It means the world to me. I hope to share this experience with my daughter, so together we can inspire the next generation to follow their dreams.”
Virgin Galactic and Omaze unveiled the sweepstakes in July, simply after Unity flew its first totally crewed spaceflight. That mission, often called Unity 22, despatched Virgin Group founder Richard Branson and three different crewmembers, together with two pilots, to suborbital space from Spaceport America in New Mexico.
Each greenback donated to the sweepstakes through Omaze purchased 10 entries. The contest, which ran by way of Aug. 31, drew donations from 164,338 folks all over the world and raised a projected $1.7 million, Virgin Galactic representatives mentioned.
The cash will profit the nonprofit Space for Humanity’s Citizen Astronaut Program (CAP). This program invitations folks from a wide range of backgrounds to “apply for an opportunity to go to space and experience the Overview Effect: the cognitive shift in awareness that occurs when a human being looks down on the Earth from space,” Space for Humanity wrote in a CAP description.
“Each year, a new crew is selected from a diverse group of leaders from around the globe,” they added. “Upon their return, each citizen astronaut has a commitment to leveraging that experience for the collective good.”
Space for Humanity founder Dylan Taylor will fly to space quickly, by the best way — however not with Virgin Galactic. Taylor is likely one of the six crewmembers on the next mission of Blue Origin’s New Shepard suborbital vehicle, which is scheduled to launch Dec. 9 from West Texas.
Among Taylor’s crewmates are Good Morning America host and former NFL star Michael Strahan and Laura Shepard Churchley, the daughter of Alan Shepard, who in 1961 grew to become the primary American to achieve space. (New Shepard is known as after him.)
Virgin Galactic and Omaze didn’t announce a goal date for the flight that can carry Keisha S. and her daughter. But it will not occur for some time but; Virgin Galactic is performing upkeep and enhancement work on VSS Unity’s provider aircraft, VMS Eve, and the duo possible will not fly collectively once more until mid-2022, firm representatives have mentioned.
(Eve carries the six-passenger Unity to an altitude of about 50,000 toes, or 15,000 meters. Unity then separates, fires up its rocket motor and makes its personal option to suborbital space.)
Mike Wall is the writer of “Out There” (Grand Central Publishing, 2018; illustrated by Karl Tate), a e book in regards to the seek for alien life. Follow him on Twitter @michaeldwall. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom or on Facebook.