SpaceX mission reveals incredible photos as civilian crew orbit Earth

Incredible images from SpaceX have revealed the unique perspective four civilians are having of planet Earth as they take part in an historic mission in space.

The crew on board the Dragon spacecraft mission – known as Inspiration4 – are currently flying 575 kilometres from Earth.

Tracking maps show the journey as the Inspiration4 crew orbits Earth approximately every 90 minutes.

A view from the cupola of the SpaceX Dragon craft, known as Inspiration4, as it orbits Earth. (SpaceX)

Inspiration4 is commanded by Jared Isaacman, an accomplished pilot and adventurer.

Also on board are medical officer Hayley Arceneaux, a physician assistant at St Jude Children’s Research Hospital and paediatric cancer survivor; mission specialist Chris Sembroski, an Air Force veteran and aerospace data engineer; and mission pilot Dr Sian Proctor, a geoscientist, entrepreneur, and trained pilot.

None of the crew are trained astronauts.

Earlier today SpaceX gave an update on the flight saying the “crew is healthy, happy, and resting comfortably”.

A live flight tracker allows the public to follow the flight journey of the SpaceX Dragon craft, known as Inspiration4. (SpaceX)

“Before the crew went to bed, they travelled 5.5 times around Earth, completed their first round of scientific research, and enjoyed a couple of meals,” SpaceX said in a tweet.

They also got a first look outside of Dragon’s cupola, revealing a stunning view of the Earth below.

And in a special treat for patients at St Jude, the crew took part in a question and answer session – from space.

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, with four private citizens onboard, lifts off in this time-exposure photo from Kennedy Space Center's Launch Pad 39-A, Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2021, in Cape Canaveral, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, with four private citizens onboard, lifts off in this time-exposure photo from Kennedy Space Centre. (AP)

The mission blasted off from NASA’s Kennedy Space Centre in Florida yesterday morning.

After reaching orbital speeds — more than 27,000km/h — the capsule carrying the four passengers detached from the rocket and began to manoeuvre toward its intended orbit.

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, with four private citizens onboard, lifts off in this time-exposure photo from Kennedy Space Center's Launch Pad 39-A, Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2021, in Cape Canaveral, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
SpaceX’s first private flight streaked into orbit with two contest winners, a health care worker and their rich sponsor, the most ambitious leap yet in space tourism. (AP)

For the next three days, the passengers will float around the capsule as it circles around the planet once every 90 minutes.

The spacecraft will dive back into the atmosphere for a fiery re-entry and splash down off the coast of Florida.

Splashdown is currently slated for Sunday morning, but that could change if weather or other issues prompt an earlier or later return.

The crew of SpaceX Inspiration4 – the first flight into space without a professional astronaut on board. (SpaceX)

The capsule is stocked with enough food and supplies for about a week.

The Crew Dragon spacecraft will reach an altitude of 575 kilometres, slightly higher where the Hubble Space Telescope currently sits.

In this July 2, 2021 photo provided by John Kraus, from left, Sian Proctor, Chris Sembroski, Jared Isaacman and Hayley Arceneaux pose for a photo at Duke Health in Durham, N.C, during hypoxia training to understand how each crew member reacts in a low-oxygen environment. (John Kraus/Inspiration4 via AP)

First space tourists orbit earth

A seat on board reportedly cost about $75 million, even though the exact figures have not been released.

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