Japanese billionaire to fly eight members of the public on SpaceX moon flight

Japanese billionaire entrepreneur Yusaku Maezawa speaks at SpaceX’s headquarters in Hawthorne, California. 

Michael Sheetz | CNBC

Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa introduced on Tuesday that he’ll select eight members of the public to be a part of him on his journey round the moon, scheduled to fly on SpaceX’s Starship rocket in 2023.

“I’m inviting you to join me on this mission,” Maezawa mentioned in a video.

Maezawa, who introduced the mission in September 2018 alongside SpaceX founder Elon Musk, mentioned that the plan has advanced from flying artists on a visit to lunar orbit.

His venture, referred to as dearMoon, will now fly “10 to 12 people in all,” with eight of the crew coming from members of the public who Maezawa plans to choose.

The billionaire says he “will pay for the entire journey,” so those that be a part of him will fly without spending a dime. Maezawa made his fortune after founding this style retail firm Zozotown, which he resigned from in 2019 after promoting a majority stake to SoftBank.

The dearMoon mission will take three days to fly to the moon, loop behind it in orbit, after which spend three days returning. Musk added that, as well as to the historic first as a personal lunar mission, the rocket’s flight path means it should transcend the distance traveled by the Apollo missions.

“This mission we expect people will go further than any human has ever gone from planet Earth,” Musk mentioned.

The mission’s flight plan.


The dearMoon web site says “pre-registration” is open till March 14. The pre-registration utility requests one’s title, nation, electronic mail handle, and a profile image. An “initial screening” course of begins March 21, with a “final interview and medical checkup” in late May.

There are two “key criteria” for any one who applies to fly with Maezawa: First, {that a} potential passenger can advance “whatever activity” they’re into “by going to space.”

“By going to space could you do something that’s even better, even bigger?” Maezawa requested.

Second, the eight aspiring astronauts should “be willing and able to support other crew members who share similar aspirations,” he mentioned.

Starship prototype SN9 launches from the firm’s growth facility in Boca Chica, Texas.


It’s been almost two and a half years since Maezawa made his unique dearMoon announcement and the venture has caught to its 2023 aim for the mission’s launch.

In the meantime, SpaceX has continued to work on growing Starship. The rocket represents a next-generation automobile that’s key to Musk’s desires of house exploration.

Musk goals for Starship to be totally reusable – not simply the booster, which is the backside portion of the rocket – by touchdown and relaunching in a far more comparable to a industrial airliner.

SpaceX has but to attain orbit with a Starship rocket, however it’s quickly constructing and testing prototypes at its facility in Boca Chica, Texas. The firm has efficiently launched a number of Starship prototypes, touchdown them safely after quick flights to about 500 ft in altitude. 

Its two most up-to-date high-altitude flights, regardless of passing a number of growth milestones, exploded on impression throughout tried landings. 

SpaceX has not disclosed how a lot its has spent on the Starship program to date, however Musk beforehand estimated that he expects it should value the firm about $5 billion to full.

Notably, SpaceX’s valuation has soared since Maezawa’s unique announcement, from about $25 billion at the time to about $74 billion this previous month.

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