in Blue Origin capsule (photo from 2017)
Photo: Isaiah Downing / REUTERS
(57) wants to fly into space. "I have been dreaming of traveling into space since I was five. On July 20, I will take this trip with my brother," Bezos wrote on Instagram on Monday. The founder of the internet company published a video in which he raved about his fascination for space and asked his brother if he would like to take him on the first manned flight of his space company Blue Origin. On July 5, Bezos plans to hand over the head of Amazon to his successor Andy Jassy.
Bezos has a ticket auctioned for the same flight.
The final bid for a seat in the astronaut capsule, which has large picture windows and can accommodate six people, is $ 2.8 million.
According to Blue Origin, more than 5,200 bidders from 136 countries have participated so far.
The auction will run until June 12th and the final will be broadcast live.
The company left open on Monday who should take a seat in the remaining vacant seats.
The roughly ten-minute flight should bring the crew to a height of just over 100 kilometers.
At this distance from the earth's surface, according to the definition of the Fédération Internationale Aéronautique, space begins, everything below that still belongs to the atmosphere according to this rule.
Race with Richard Branson and Elon Musk
If the maiden flight is successful on July 20th, Blue Origin should usher in the era of commercial space tourism.
Two other billionaires are in the running with their own companies:
(70) with Virgin Galactic and
(49) with SpaceX.
Musk's company plans to take in the first paying astronauts by the end of the year.
Virgin Galactic seemed way ahead and had already inaugurated a spaceport in the Nevada desert and sold hundreds of tickets each $ 250,000 before a test aircraft crashed in 2014.
Before that, some paying passengers had already flown into space, mostly on regular research flights by the Russian space agency Roskosmos to the international space station.
Bezos founded Blue Origin around 20 years ago.
In mid-April, the company had last tested its "New Shepard" rocket with astronaut capsule.
It reached an altitude of around 105 kilometers before returning to Earth.
For the first time, employees of the company also rehearsed some astronaut tasks before take-off and after landing.
The actual test flight, however, remained unmanned - the "New Shepard" has never flown with people on board.
ak / dpa-afx, Reuters