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Space Tourism

Blue Origin to build Orbital Reef “business park”

Blue Origin and Sierra Space announced the plan to build a commercially developed, owned and operated LEO space station, called Orbital Reef, by 2030. The project is encouraged by Boeing, Genesis Engineering Solutions, Redwire Space, and Arizona State University. The destination will offer research, industrial, and commercial customers cost competitive services, Blue Origin said.

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Virgin Galactic delays its commercial spaceflights

On Monday, UBS analyst Myles Walton downgraded Virgin Galactic (ticker: SPCE) from Hold to Sell as the company is delaying commercial space flights. The news disappointed investors who had expected revenue-generating, commercial operations to start early next year. Last week Virgin said they would reorganise their development and test flight schedule.

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Blue Origin successfully completes second human spaceflight

Blue Origin successfully completed its second human spaceflight yesterday on board of New Shepard. The flight carried four space tourists, Dr. Chris Boshuizen, Glen de Vries, Audrey Powers, and William Shatner through the Kármán line. Also, on board were the thousands of postcards made by young students for Blue Origin’s foundation, Club for the Future.

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U.S. FAA clears Virgin Galactic for further flights

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has cleared Virgin Galactic to resume launches, Virgin Galactic said. The FAA carried out an investigation as the rocket plane deviated from its course while descending during July’s flight. The FAA barred Virgin from flying SpaceShipTwo until the investigation to determine the issues would not affect public safety was over.

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Blue Origin announces customers to fly on their second human space flight

Two out of four: Blue Origin announced that New Shepard’s 18th mission, NS-18, will carry four astronauts to space, including Dr Chris Boshuizen and Glen de Vries. Dr Boshuizen is a former NASA engineer and co-founder of Planet Labs while de Vries is the co-founder of Medidata. The two other astronauts will be announced at a later date.

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UN secretary-general Guterres criticizes space tourism

António Guterres, the secretary-general of the United Nations, mentioned space tourism alongside corruption and loss of freedoms as cause for the ever-increasing gap between socioeconomic groups. Addressing the General Assembly, Guterres said “billionaires joyriding to space” led to the growing mistrust towards governments and the values of the UN.

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SpaceX’s Inspiration4 safely returns to Earth

SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule, Resilience, touched down in the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of Cape Canaveral, Florida on Saturday. The spacecraft carried the four members of the Inspiration4 mission safely back to Earth after spending three days in LEO. SpaceX loaded the capsule onto its recovery ship in less than an hour so that the crew could exit.

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