Astro-tourism has lift-off as SpaceX crews splashes down safely

World

Astro-tourism has lift-off as SpaceX crews splashes down safely

The capsule with the world’s first all-civilian orbital crew returned at the weekend after a three-day flight

Steve Gorman

The quartet of newly minted citizen astronauts comprising the SpaceX Inspiration4 mission safely splashed down in the Atlantic off Florida’s coast on Saturday, completing a three-day flight of the first all-civilian crew ever sent into Earth orbit.

The successful launch and return of the mission, the latest in a recent string of rocket-powered expeditions bankrolled by their billionaire passengers, marked another milestone in the fledgling industry of commercial astro-tourism, 60 years after the dawn of human space flight.

“Welcome to the second space age,” Todd “Leif” Ericson, mission director for the Inspiration4 venture, said after the crew returned...

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