Four amateur astronauts give the thumbs-up as they become the first all-civilian crew to head into Earth's orbit. Read more about the crew here:
Christopher Sembroski, Dr Sian Proctor, Hayley Arceneaux and Jared Isaacman have become the first all-civilian crew ever to orbit the Earth. Below, Sky News answers your questions on the mission ahead.
Image:Jared Isaacman. Pic: Inspiration4/John KrausAn experienced pilot, he wants the journey to raise awareness for St Jude's Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee.The other three members of the crew were selected according to Mr Isaacman's conditions.
Hayley Arceneaux, 29, is an employee of St Jude's, and had cancer during her childhood.Taking someone from the hospital was a condition from Mr Isaacman.Ms Arceneaux, a physician's assistant, is the first person to travel towith a prosthesis - part of her right femur was replaced by a metal rod during a bone cancer battle at the age of 10.
Dr Proctor, 51, is an entrepreneur and trained pilot herself.She won her seat through a competition based on a set of business-related tasks.Image:The four space tourists have defined roles. Pic: Inspiration4/John KrausThe scientist previously applied for headtopics.com
's astronaut programme but was unsuccessful - but is now in space.Last up is Chris Sembroski, 42, a US Air Force veteran who now works for Lockheed Martin.He was selected from a lottery of people who donated to St Jude's - a competition which received around 72,000 entries.
What are their roles?The four space tourists have defined roles, according to their backgrounds.They have been branded leadership, hope, prosperity and generosity.Mr Isaacman is leadership, and he will be the mission commander in charge of the operation.
Hope is Ms Arceneaux, who will act as medical officer and will help with experiments being carried out - many of which are medically based.Image:Dr Proctor unsuccesfully applied to be a NASA astronaut. Pic: Inspiration4/John KrausDr Proctor is prosperity and the mission pilot. She will support Mr Isaacman.
Generosity is represented by Mr Sembroski, who is the mission specialist and will help"manage payload, science experiments, communications to mission control and more".What will they do?Most of the experiments being carried out by the crew are"to increase humanity's knowledge on the impact of spaceflight on the human body". headtopics.com
SpaceX, the Translational Research Institute for Space Health (TRISH) at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, and the Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City will analyse the data collected.What experiments will they doCollecting"research-grade ECG activity, movement, sleep, heart rate and rhythm, blood oxygen saturation, cabin noise and light intensity"
Test behavioural and cognitive function using computer softwareUltrasound scans for organs to see if non-experts can get good quality image and see how spaceflight affects the bodyDraw and test blood to see how the immune system functions in spaceTesting motor function before and after the flight
How is the ship controlled?The crew are aboard a Dragon capsule, a reusable pod developed by SpaceX.It can seat up to seven people, and has been to the25 times - 10 of which were repeat journeys.Image:The Dragon capsule has room for seven people and solar panels to provide power
It is capable of carrying 365lbs (166kg) of cargo, which is being used for scientific equipment and crew essentials on this journey.Solar panels on the outside of the craft are used to generate power for the capsule and crew.Image:The touchscreen control panels in the capsule allow the crew to monitor telemetry headtopics.com
The vessel is largely automatically controlled, with a set of large touch screens instead of the traditional-looking dashboard of buttons, levers and toggles for the pilots to observe.The pilots can also take control of the capsule with the touchscreens.
Sixteen Draco thrusters are used to direct the vehicle after it separates from the take-off rocket, and it has a set of parachutes for landing.How are they getting back?Image:A splashdown of a Dragon capsule. Pic: NASAAfter the orbiting is complete, the capsule will head back to Earth.
According to the official plan, this will culminate in a"soft water landing" off the coast of Florida.After re-entering our planet's atmosphere, two"drogue" parachutes are deployed, before four main canopies are released.The crew and vessel will then be retrieved from the water.Read more: Sky News »
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