(CMR) SpaceX announced on Monday that it would launch the world's first all-civilian mission to space later this year, and the public has the chance to win a seat on the trip.
Four individuals will be on the mission, known as Inspiration4, which aims to raise support for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
The spacecraft will be commanded by Jared Isaacman, the founder and CEO of Shift4 Payments. Isaacman is donating the three accompanying seats on the mission to persons representing the mission pillars of leadership, hope, generosity, and prosperity, SpaceX said in a press release.
“You have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to join this flight to space by securing either the Generosity or Prosperity seat,” the Inspiration4 website said.
“Inspiration4 is the realization of a lifelong dream and a step towards a future in which anyone can venture out and explore the stars. I appreciate the tremendous responsibility that comes with commanding this mission and I want to use this historic moment to inspire humanity while helping to tackle childhood cancer here on Earth,” Isaacman said in a statement.
Two of the seats on the mission were given to St Jude, one of which is reserved for a St. Jude ambassador who has direct ties to the mission.
The third and fourth crew seats will be decided by online competitions that run from February 1 to 28, listed on the Inspiration4 website. The third seat is open to those who donate to St. Jude, while the fourth is open to an entrepreneur who uses the Shift4Shop eCommerce platform.
The Inspiration4 crew will undergo training led by SpaceX, and they will prepare for launch atop one of the company’s Falcon 9 rockets.
This multi-day journey, orbiting Earth every 90 minutes along a customized flight path, will be carefully monitored at every step by SpaceX mission control.
The spacecraft will be launched from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida and will have soft water landing off Florida's coast.