So You Want to Be on Inspiration4 — Here Is What the First All-Civilian Crew Should Know

Image: SpaceX via Unsplash

t’s the Super Bowl commercial that everyone can’t stop talking about — Inspiration4 will be the world’s first all-civilian crewed mission to space. The CEO of Shift4 Payments, Jared Isaacman, will partner with St. Jude to send 3 other civilians to space. So, as a civilian-astronaut hopeful, what can you expect?

The Launch

According to Inspiration4, the crew will be launched via a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket equipped with a Dragon spacecraft on it’s famous 39A launch pad at Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The launch is expected to happen no later than the 4th quarter of 2021, with some estimates aiming for October 21 of this year.

The Mission

The crew will travel across low earth orbit on a journey lasting up to 5 days. During that time frame, the crew will conduct experiments — although the exact details of those experiments were not elaborated on. The Dragon capsule will hold 365 lbs of cargo, which will include crew essentials and equipment for micro-gravity research and experimentation.

About Jared Isaacman

Jared is founder and CEO of Shift4 Payments. He has been featured on the Today Show, Fox Business News, ABC News, Bloomberg, Businessweek, Inc. Magazine, and Fast Company. He is also an accomplished pilot who holds several world records, has participated in over 100 airshows, and is rated to fly commercial and military aircraft. He co-founded Draken International to train pilots for the U.S. Armed Forces.

The Crew (This Could Be You!)

The 3 unannounced crew members are currently known as Hope, Generosity, and Prosperity. Hope will be a St. Jude ambassador who exemplifies the vision of St. Jude — compassion, unity, equality, and inclusion. Generosity will be a randomly-drawn person who donated at least $10 to St. Jude via Prizeo. Prosperity will be an inspirational entrepreneur who has used Shift4Shop to launch their business.

The crew will have to consent to a background check and must undergo certain medical and psychological tests and assessments, so crew members will have to be physically and psychologically fit. Individuals must be under 6'6" and 250 lbs and must not suffer from any medical conditions or ailments that could limit their ability to successfully and safely complete the mission. According to SpaceX’s CEO Elon Musk, “if you can ride the Hulk roller coaster at Universal Studios in Florida, you should be fine” in regards to medical restrictions. (This statement was relayed by Eric Berger via Twitter).

Crew will be required to undergo a Mission Overview, Briefing, and Document Review, as well as any additional training courses required by the Launch Service Provider.

Image: Ellyot via Unsplash

Meet those requirements? Then check out the Inspiration4 site for more information here. Contest rules for the Generosity and Prosperity seats are listed here. The period to enter for a spot ends on February 28 and the crew selections will be announced in March. Ad Astra!

M. Lockwood is a graduate researcher with interests in aerospace medicine and environmental epidemiology.

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