SpaceX set to launch first all-commercial astronaut mission to orbit

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. — In 2020, SpaceX helped America return NASA astronauts to space for the first time since the Space Shuttle’s last flight in 2011.

Now the space company is looking to launch the first all-commercial astronaut mission into orbit.

In an announcement Monday, SpaceX said it’s targeting late 2021 for Falcon 9′s launch of Inspiration4, the world’s first all-commercial astronaut mission to orbit.

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The launch will take place from historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Plans call for the spacecraft to orbit the Earth once every 90 minutes on its multi-day journey before splashing down off the coast of Florida.

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The customized flight path will be carefully monitored by SpaceX mission control.

Jared Isaacman, founder and CEO of Shift4 Payments, is donating the three seats next to his aboard Dragon to individuals from the general public.

Isaacman says that whoever makes a donation to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital as part of the Inspiration4 fundraising efforts will get one of those seats.

To learn more about Inspiration4 here.

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Matt Reeser

Matt Reeser,

Matt Reeser joined WFTV in 1998 as a news photographer and has worked for television stations in Kentucky and West Virginia.