The United Launch Alliance may take off from the spaceship carrying Nichelle Nichols’ ashes

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February 25, 2023 | 5:08 p.m

the The United Launch Alliance announced recently It’s targeting May for the inaugural launch of its highly anticipated Vulcan Centaur rocket, which is expected to carry everything from satellites to human ashes into space.

The Vulcan Centaur rocket has faced years of delays after slower-than-expected development of powerful engines and launch time requirements for the lunar lander.

According to an updated schedule released by ULA CEO Torey Bruno, the more than 200-foot-high rocket will take off on May 4, 2023, from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.

If the launch is successful, the company plans to replace the Atlas V and Delta IV rockets with the Vulcan Centaur rocket.

The missile is said to be capable of launching 60,000 pounds of payload into low Earth orbit and could one day be adopted to carry highly sensitive satellites for US intelligence agencies.

Here’s a look at the payload that will be on board the uncrewed launch.

Astrobotic Technology’s lunar lander

The Peregrine Lunar Lander will carry science and other payloads to the lunar surface.

Astrobotic Technology said it would be the first commercial mission to land on another planetary body.

The missile experienced a huge number of delays due to the powerful engines.
Amazon

NASA said The Peregrine 1 mission will study the moon’s outer atmosphere, thermal properties, magnetic fields, and radiation.

Keepsakes and loads of Six countries expected To be on board the vehicle when it leaves the Vulcan Centaur rocket after it reaches its designated orbit.

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Amazon broadband satellite prototype

Project Kuiper, Amazon’s proposed broadband program, will have two prototype satellites aboard a Vulcan Centaur rocket.

Amazon said Constellation’s goal will be to provide fast, affordable internet to underprivileged communities around the world.

Nichols’ cremated remains will be one of more than 150 capsules on the flight.
Courtesy Everett Collection

Once complete, the constellation is expected to contain more than 3,200 Earth-orbiting satellites and be similar to SpaceX’s Starlink program.

The world’s largest online retailer has already inked a deal with ULA to launch 47 more for Project Kuiper.

No future launch dates for the Vulcan Centaur rocket have been set.

“We couldn’t be more excited to be joining the first launch of ULA’s Vulcan Centaur. We have already secured 38 launches of Kuiper at Vulcan, and using the same launch vehicle for our prototype mission gives us an opportunity to practice payload integration, handling, and mission management procedures prior to commercial launches.” This overall,” Rajeev Padial, vice president of technology at Project Kuiper, said in a statement.

Human Ashes by Celestes

The cremated remains of Star Trek actress Nichelle Nichols will be one of more than 150 capsules aboard Vulcan Centaur’s inaugural flight, which will launch personal belongings on an endless journey into space.

Celestes, Inc. Inc., a Texas-based company, offers souvenir rides that start at $2,995 and can cost customers $12,995 or more.

Launching cremated remains into space is not a new task, but sending them beyond the orbit of the Earth and the Moon has yet to be completed by a commercial company.

The missile is said to be capable of sending 60,000 pounds of payload into Earth’s orbit.

Also aboard the rocket will be Ashes from the Star Trek creator and several other cast members.

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The launch date of May 4 is also synonymous with celebration for the Star Wars series – a fitting day for the remnants of Nichols and Star Trek members to embark on their maiden voyage.





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