3, 2, 1. When the countdown ends, the windows flash orange. Then came the deafening sound. At first, the Rockets seemed slow. But it didn’t take long for you to speed up, and you felt stuffy in your chest and couldn’t move. Then, there, the engine shuts down – and before you know it, you’re back on Earth.
10 minutes. Engineer Victor Correa Hespanha, 28, became the second Brazilian to fly into space last Saturday (4) and the first to take part. space tourism.
“Indescribable” is how Victor defines what it’s like to be involved in the fifth manned mission of Blue Origin, the US company of billionaire Jeff Bezos.This excellent, he gave Details about the experience: the lottery that put him on the mission, the training, and of course the flight itself. Check:
how he was chosen
It all started on April 25th, when Victor bought a NFT (abbreviated as “non-fungible token”) in cooperation with the Crypto Space Agency (CSA) company, the price is 4000 reais. The company will sponsor one of six seats in Blue Origin’s spaceship New Shepard capsule with a sweepstakes among its buyers.
“It was the first major action by the CSA, and it was barely involved. I competed with about 200 people,” explained the Belo Horizonte (MG) resident, who until that moment was more focused on acquiring NFTs, while It is not possible to win in the draw.
The draw was held five days later and announced on CSA Twitter. In the interest of institutional secrecy, the company has only released the code that corresponds to the winner — which Victor reads (multiple times), checking every letter and number. Incredible, but he’s really going to space.
“After that, my life changed drastically.” He started interviewing for Instagram and prepare for the mission. “The previous Monday, I was working in the office. On Thursday, I was already Meet Fatima Bernardes, from the Globe. “
The NS-21 mission was originally scheduled for May 20, but Blue Origin had problems with the rocket’s backup systems. So, the first time Victor went to America, there was only a mission disclosure mission—meeting and taking pictures with the crew, company employees.
The mission was left until June, and Victor returned home for the necessary training two days before the flight.Beside him are five other men chosen to occupy the ship (see on this matter Give excellent who are they).
“First, we learned and exhaustively repeated the procedures to be performed during the mission—until they became automated for us.” Such procedures, for example, involve the communication between the crew in the capsule and the Blue Origin control tower. communication.
The U.S. company conducts the flight on autopilot — that is, spacecraft passengers don’t have to worry about piloting it. All Victor and his mates had to do was confirm with the control tower that the speakers and microphones were working, in addition to checking the panels inside the cabin—for example, they indicated when to put on or take off the seat belts.
During the training, the crew also discovered possible in-flight emergencies and what to do in each situation. “We understand the ejection pattern [dos assentos] and the exhaust valve,” explains Victor. “They are trained as if everything is normal, which provides a great sense of security. “
There are three phases – takeoff, reaching maximum altitude and returning to Earth. Each lasts about three minutes.
Once inside the New Shepard capsule, the crew waited about 30 minutes for the launch – watching the countdown on the screen. Three, two, one: Passengers see orange flashes outside the window and begin to hear very loud noises.
“The rocket seemed a little slow at first, then it picked up speed. Then you started to feel pressure in the chest and it became difficult to move,” explained the engineer. After a while, almost reaching the highest point of the parabola, the ship’s trajectory, the engine shuts down.
The capsule is separated from the rocket; the crew is allowed to loosen the seat belts. “The most incredible feeling [de microgravidade]. It feels like you are out of your body. Your only references are your seat and the earth outside – other than that, you don’t know where ‘up’ and ‘down’ are. “
During the doctor’s visit to space, the crew took photos, videos and… somersaults, floating in the cabin. Time to get in your seat and go back. “The descent is also fast, the spaceship reaches around two thousand kilometers per hour. You feel like you’re in one of those amusement park elevators [brinquedos que despencam a dezenas de metros, em queda livre]. “
Approaching the Earth’s surface, the capsule deploys a set of parachutes (below) and then releases a jet to stabilize before landing — which happens in a desert area a few kilometers from Blue Origin’s launch pad, in Texas.
mission video Available online, but Blue Origin intends to release more material that showcases the visitor experience. Meanwhile, Victor intends to share more about the trip. on your Instagram account.
He said he had no previous experience producing content for the internet — and the task has been challenging. “I don’t want to be an influencer. But I want to share my story and be involved in projects that help develop space tourism in Brazil.”
For him, being the second Brazilian to go into space is a “huge privilege” and very symbolic. “I think my experience brings hope that others will travel to space in the near future.”
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