Jeff Bezos’ space travel company, Blue Origin, said it will delay its next rocket launch until Wednesday due to forecasted winds in west Texas. The New Shepard launch was originally scheduled for Tuesday.
"Due to forecasted winds in West Texas we are pushing #NS18 launch target to Wednesday, October 13," the company tweeted Sunday.
The upcoming flight is notable because Star Trek" actor William Shatner will be on board.
"Yes, it’s true; I’m going to be a ‘rocket man!’" the 90-year-old tweeted earlier this month. He added: "It’s never too late to experience new things."
Shatner will become the oldest person to go to space. He’ll join three others — two of them paying customers — aboard a Blue Origin capsule. He’ll wind up being the second actor to reach space this month: Russia is launching an actress and a film director to the International Space Station on Tuesday for almost two weeks of moviemaking.
A fourth seat on the flight is going to Blue Origin’s vice president of mission and flight operations, who used to work for NASA as a space station flight controller.
Shatner’s flight, by comparison, will last just 10 minutes and reach no higher than about 66 miles. The capsule will parachute back to the desert floor, not far from where it took off.
In July, Bezos blasted into space on his rocket company’s first flight with people on board, becoming the second billionaire in just over a week to ride his own spacecraft. The Amazon founder was accompanied by a hand-picked group: his brother, an 18-year-old from the Netherlands and an 82-year-old aviation pioneer from Texas — the youngest and oldest to ever fly in space.
During that flight, Blue Origin’s capsule reached an altitude of about 66 miles. The 60-foot booster accelerated to Mach 3 or three times the speed of sound to get the capsule high enough, before separating and landing upright.
The Associated Press contributed to this report. This story was reported from Los Angeles.