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Virgin Galactic Reveals the Winner of its Omaze Giveaway, Winner to Travel to Space for Free

(Photo : GettyImages/Photo by Patrick T. FALLON ) Virgin Galactic space flight

Virgin Galactic gave out two free tickets for a ride to the final frontier. The spaceflight company and the charity fundraising platform Omaze announced on Nov. 24 that Keisha S., a health and energy coach from the Caribbean nation of Antigua and Barbuda, has won two seats aboard Virgin Galactic’s VSS Unity spaceplane.

That is a $900,000 value. Virgin Galactic is currently selling seats for $450,000 a piece. Keisha plans to fly to space and back with their daughter, an astrophysics student.

Virgin Galactic Announces Winner of Free Space Ride

Keisha said in a statement that she always had a lifelong love of flying and a fascination with space, and this is a dream come true for her. She added that it means the world to me. She hopes to share this experience with her daughter, so together they can inspire the next generation to follow their dreams.

Omaze and Virgin Galactic unveiled the sweepstakes in July, just after Unity flew its first fully crewed spaceflight, according to Space.

Also Read: Blue Origin vs. Virgin Galactic: Differences of New Shepard and Unity-22 Spacecrafts from Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson

That mission, also known as Unity 22, sent Virgin Group founder Richard Branson and three other crew members, along with two pilots, to suborbital space from Spaceport America in New Mexico.

Each dollar donated to the sweepstakes through Omaze bought 10 entries. The contest, which ran through Aug. 30, drew donations from 164, 338 people around the world and raised a projected $1.7 million, Virgin Galactic representative said.

The money will benefit the nonprofit Space for Humanity’s Citizen Astronaut Program or CAP, according to TechCrunch.

This program invites people from a variety of backgrounds to apply for an opportunity to go to space and experience the Overview Effect, the cognitive shift in awareness that occurs when a human being looks down on the Earth from space, Space for Humanity wrote in a CAP description.

Space for Humanity added that every year, a new crew is selected from a diverse group of leaders from around the globe. Upon their return, each citizen astronaut has a commitment to leveraging that experience for the collective good, according to Engadget.

In September, Virgin Galactic’s space flights were suspended due to the dangerous July mission.

In the same month, Virgin Galactic delayed the space mission with Italian air force.

Blue Origin’s New Shepard

Dylan Taylor, the founder of Space for Humanity, will fly to space soon but not with Virgin Galactic. Taylor is one of the six crewmembers on the next mission of Blue Origin’s New Shepard suborbital vehicle, which is scheduled to launch Dec. 9 from West Texas.

Among Taylor’s crewmates are Good Morning America host and former NFL star Michael Strahan and Laura Shepard Churchley, the daughter of Alan Shepard, who in 1961 became the first American to reach space.

Virgin Galactic and Omaze did not announce a target date for the flight that will carry Keisha S. and her daughter.

However, it won’t happen for a while yet. Virgin Galactic is performing maintenance and enhancement work on VSS Unity’s carrier plane, VMS Eve, and the duo likely won’t fly together again until mid-2022, company representatives have said.

Eve carries the six-passenger Unity to an altitude of about 50,000 feet, or 15,000 meters. Unity then separates, fires up its rocket motor and makes its own way to suborbital space.

Related Article: Virgin Galactic ‘Sweepstakes’ Raffles Two Seats of Next Spaceflight for Free, Richard Branson Reveals

This article is owned by Tech Times

Written by Sophie Webster

ⓒ 2021 All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.

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