Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa has invited eight people to join him for a free ride to the Moon on a SpaceX Starship rocket sometime in 2023.
Maezawa, the founder of Japan’s largest online fashion retailer Zozotown, said that he wants people from all backgrounds to join.
“It will be 10 to 12 people in all, but I will be inviting 8 people to come along on the ride,” he said in a YouTube video.
Maezawa said he will foot the bill for the entire journey.
— Yusaku Maezawa (MZ) (@yousuckMZ) March 2, 2021
The mission, called ‘Dear Moon’, is scheduled to fly in 2023.
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk announced him as the first passenger to the Moon on his Starship rocket way back in 2018.
Maezawa who is an avid art collector, then announced his Dear Moon Project, aimed to bring “six to eight artists from around the world” to join him in a six-day lunar fly-by mission.
“These artists will be asked to create something after they return to Earth, and these masterpieces will inspire the dreamer within all of us,” the Japanese billionaire said about the Moon ride.
Planned for 2023, the ‘Dear Moon’ mission would be the first lunar journey by humans since 1972.
Artists from India have submitted the most applications, followed by applications from Japan.
【 #dearMoonCrew Applications Update】More than 100K applications from 216 countries + areas（As of 3/3 6:59AM PST）
TOP 10 countries
1. India 🇮🇳
2. Japan 🇯🇵
3. US 🇺🇸
4. UK 🇬🇧
5. France 🇫🇷
6. Mexico 🇲🇽
7. Spain 🇪🇸
8. Canada 🇨🇦
9. Indonesia 🇮🇩
10. Netherlands 🇳🇱
— Yusaku Maezawa (MZ) (@yousuckMZ) March 3, 2021
SpaceX has also announced the world’s first all-civilian mission to space at the end of 2021 in a charity-driven mission named Inspiration4, commanded by tech entrepreneur Jared Isaacman.
SpaceX will choose three people to ride alongside Isaacman to orbit the planet aboard SpaceX’s Crew Dragon capsule every 90 minutes along a customised flight path.
Upon conclusion of the multi-day journey, Dragon will reenter Earth’s atmosphere for a soft water landing off the coast of Florida.
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