Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson felt 'shock', US government said - 'Both billionaires are not astronauts', citing space travel rules

Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson felt ‘shock’, US government said – ‘Both billionaires are not astronauts’, citing space travel rules

The US, citing the rule of the ‘New Federal Aviation Administration’ (FAA), said that Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson are not astronauts.

Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson (File Photo)

America has taken a step that has shocked Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and British billionaire Richard Branson. Actually, America has tightened the rules for the interpretation of ‘Astronaut’. New Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) rules state that to be called an astronaut, a person must be part of a flight crew and contribute to space flight safety. This means that Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson are not astronauts in the eyes of the US government.

These are the first changes since the introduction of the FAA Wings program in 2004. The Commercial Astronaut Wings Program update was announced on Tuesday. On the same day when Amazon’s Jeff Bezos flew to the edge of space in a Blue Origin rocket. To qualify as commercial astronauts, space travelers must travel 50 miles above Earth’s surface, which both Bezos and Branson have accomplished. Apart from altitude, the agency says that the astronaut will have to perform those activities during the flight, which is necessary for public safety.

The Astronaut Wing gets the title in the US in these two ways

The FAA said in a statement that the change enhances the Wings plan’s role to protect public safety during commercial space flight. Those who feel that they should nominate the Astronaut Wing under the Commercial Wing, they need to nominate themselves. An FAA spokesperson said that at this time they have not received any such request. At the same time, there are two ways in America, through which the Astronaut gets the title. This includes becoming an astronaut through the army and NASA. The first Astronaut Wings were given to astronauts Alan Shepard Jr. and Virgil Grissom for their participation in the Mercury Seven program in the early 1960s.

When did Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson fly to space?

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos flew to space on July 20 on a Blue Origin rocket. His journey lasted 11 minutes and he was accompanied by three other people on this space walk. Bezos said that this day has been his best day so far. At the same time, British billionaire Richard Branson went to space on 11 July. Branson (70) along with five more people reached the edge of space at an altitude of about 53 miles (88 kilometers). There they returned after feeling weightlessness for three to four minutes and seeing the sight of the earth.

Also read: Jeff Bezos spent Rs 4,01,94,76,50,000 on space travel, know how many people could have been vaccinated by this


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Shehnaz is a Corporate Communications Expert by profession and writer by Passion. She has experience of many years in the same. Her educational background in Mass communication has given her a broad base from which to approach many topics. She enjoys writing about Public relations, Corporate communications, travel, entrepreneurship, insurance, and finance among others.
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