The enterprise starship has never delayed its task of finding new life and new civilization because of bad weather, but this is what Star Trek Captain William Shatner faces in real life. He wants to become the oldest spacecraft in the world aboard the blue source suborbital rocket spacecraft.
Blue origin, a space startup founded by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, said that the 90 year old actor and his three crew will now ride on the company’s new Shepard spacecraft, originally scheduled for Wednesday, not Tuesday, because unacceptable winds are expected at the West Texas launch site.
After flying from the New York animation show, Shatner has been at the launch site of blue origin. He was joined by Chris boshuzan, co-founder of planet labs, Glen de Vries, co-founder of medidata, and Audrey powers, vice president of blue origin’s mission and flight operations for the new Shepard.
Boshuzan and de Frith are paying an undisclosed fee for their trip, while Bowles and Shatner fly as special guests of blue origin.
According to today’s announcement, weather is the only consideration for launch.
“As part of today’s flight readiness review, the mission operation team confirmed that the aircraft had met all mission requirements, and the astronauts began training today,” blue origin said.
Blue origin’s flight plan requires four people to launch outside the space boundary of 100 kilometers (62 miles), experience weightlessness for a few minutes, and observe the curved earth through the picture window of the new Shepard crew cabin. Then, when the ship’s hydrogen fuel rocket booster lands automatically, they will make a parachute assisted landing.
The trip followed the pattern of the first manned new Shepard flight in July, and was jointly completed by Bezos, his brother Mark, Dutch student Oliver Damman (18 years old, the world’s youngest space shuttle) and aviation pioneer Wally Fink (82 years old, the oldest human record holder in space).
Shatner has toured the TV interview tour. “I’m scared,” he said on NBC. “I’m Captain Kirk. I’m afraid of going to space.”
But on CNN, Shatner said he looked forward to seeing “the grandeur of space and the oasis of the earth”. He also joked about one of the most famous roles in Kirk’s previous career, playing a crazy plane passenger in twilight
“I want to stick my nose to the plastic window,” Shatner said. “I don’t want to see anyone looking at me outside.”
The launch time on Wednesday is 8:30 a.m. Eastern time (6:30 a.m. Pacific time). 90 minutes before the launch, streaming video coverage will be started through the website of blue origin.