SERA Names India Partner in Human Spaceflight Programme, Offering Space Travel Opportunity

Credit: Blue Origin

The U.S.-based Space Exploration and Research Agency () announced on Monday that will participate as a partner country in its upcoming human spaceflight programme, aimed at sending six citizen astronauts from nations with limited or no space exploration history into space.

Partnering with , SERA’s programme will enable selected citizens to embark on an 11-minute journey aboard New Shepard, Blue Origin’s reusable suborbital rocket, following rigorous training at the launch site in West Texas.

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“We want to make space accessible for everyone and are happy to offer this unique opportunity to an Indian citizen who wants to experience the wonders of space travel,” stated SERA Co-Founder Joshua Skurla.

Candidates interested in the programme will need to pay a $2.50 fee for verification checks and meet specified physical requirements, according to SERA. The final candidate will be chosen through a public vote, a method aimed at sparking national discussions on space exploration and promoting global cooperation.

“This approach (of public voting) will ignite national conversations on space and foster international collaboration in space exploration,” commented SERA Co-Founder Sam Hutchison.

India’s inclusion in the programme comes amidst recent milestones in its space sector, including the historic landing on the unexplored south pole of the and the launch of its first solar mission in September. Additionally, India is collaborating with , led by , for the launch of a communications .

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, inaugurated for an unprecedented third term last month, has prioritized the expansion of India’s space sector through increased privatization and commercialization. His efforts aim to elevate India’s standing in the global space arena, which is largely dominated by the U.S. and other leading nations.

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