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SERA, Blue Origin to launch common citizens on next space mission

IANS | April 23, 2024 02:51 PM

NEW DELHI: The Space Exploration & Research Agency (SERA) on Tuesday announced a partnership with Blue Origin to develop a human spaceflight programme that will provide the opportunity for "everyday citizens from around the world to become astronauts and participate in space science".

The programme's first flight has reserved all six seats on a future Blue Origin New Shepard mission.

While five seats will be allocated to five partner nations that have either never had an astronaut or very few, the sixth seat will be open to a person from any nation.

An earlier collaboration between SERA (formerly CSA) and Blue Origin, helped Victor Hespanha, a 28-year-old civil engineer, to become the second Brazilian in space. He flew to space on NS-21, Blue Origin’s fifth crewed flight, on June 4, 2022.

"Nearly 150 countries have never had an astronaut. We created this programme to change this. Victor’s flight showed us how one person can inspire and excite an entire nation about the potential of space and we want to repeat that on a much larger scale. Blue Origin helps make this possible and we share the vision of making space more accessible for everyone, " said Joshua Skurla, Co-Founder of SERA.

SERA aims to create a space agency for everyone and accelerate global participation in the space sector.

"Our future life in space must reflect the rich diversity here on Earth. This programme is a meaningful step toward making space accessible to people who would otherwise not have an opportunity to experience its wonders. It also inspires their fellow citizens -- and many others beyond their borders -- along the way, " added Phil Joyce, Senior Vice President, New Shepard Business Unit, Blue Origin.

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