Billionaires in SPAAAAAAACE!

31 views
Skip to first unread message

Keith F. Lynch

unread,
Jul 11, 2021, 6:20:47 PMJul 11
to
Since when is 53.5 miles (86.1 kilometers) outer space? The official
boundary has always been 100 kilometers. Branson hasn't been to
space. Bezos still has the chance to be first.

If Bezos reaches exactly 100 kilometers, that's less than half a
millimeter of altitude for every dollar he has.
--
Keith F. Lynch - http://keithlynch.net/
Please see http://keithlynch.net/email.html before emailing me.

Jay E. Morris

unread,
Jul 11, 2021, 9:27:46 PMJul 11
to
On 7/11/2021 5:20 PM, Keith F. Lynch wrote:
> Since when is 53.5 miles (86.1 kilometers) outer space? The official
> boundary has always been 100 kilometers. Branson hasn't been to
> space. Bezos still has the chance to be first.
>
> If Bezos reaches exactly 100 kilometers, that's less than half a
> millimeter of altitude for every dollar he has.
>

Perhaps the confusion comes from the fact that they qualified for
astronaut wings so the reporters assumed that meant they reached outer
space.

Charles Packer

unread,
Jul 12, 2021, 3:42:27 AMJul 12
to
On Sun, 11 Jul 2021 22:20:46 +0000, Keith F. Lynch wrote:

> Since when is 53.5 miles (86.1 kilometers) outer space? The official
> boundary has always been 100 kilometers. Branson hasn't been to space.
> Bezos still has the chance to be first.
>

First? I recall that private citizens have already paid
billionaire-caliber amounts of money to ride fully into orbit
(to the ISS, I think). But hey, the magic of journalism can of
course make that bit of history disappear from the public
consciousness for the purposes of the current Branson/Bezos story.

Paul Dormer

unread,
Jul 12, 2021, 5:46:17 AMJul 12
to
In article <scfqrt$9oc$2...@reader1.panix.com>, k...@KeithLynch.net (Keith F.
Lynch) wrote:

> Since when is 53.5 miles (86.1 kilometers) outer space? The official
> boundary has always been 100 kilometers. Branson hasn't been to
> space. Bezos still has the chance to be first.

There was a correction in The Observer yesterday clarifying an article.
Although the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale's definition of space
is 100km, the US Air Force and NASA define space as 80km.

Tim Merrigan

unread,
Jul 12, 2021, 4:08:31 PMJul 12
to
On Mon, 12 Jul 2021 07:42:26 GMT, Charles Packer <mai...@cpacker.org>
wrote:
Those guys were paying the Russian government, this person is paying a
private citizen.

I almost said Soviet, but I don't think there were any before the
collapse of the Soviet Union.
--

Qualified immuninity = vertual impunity.

Tim Merrigan

--
This email has been checked for viruses by AVG.
https://www.avg.com

Jibini Kula Tumbili Kujisalimisha

unread,
Jul 12, 2021, 5:45:42 PMJul 12
to
Charles Packer <mai...@cpacker.org> wrote in
news:CnSGI.9674$Nq7....@fx33.iad:
You can't sell advertising in a story about the 10th guy to do
something.

--
Terry Austin

Proof that Alan Baker is a liar and a fool, and even stupider than
Lynn:
https://www.cbp.gov/newsroom/stats/sw-border-migration
(May 2019 total for people arrested for entering the United States
illegally is over 132,000 for just the southwest border.)

Vacation photos from Iceland:
https://plus.google.com/u/0/collection/QaXQkB

Keith F. Lynch

unread,
Jul 12, 2021, 6:00:18 PMJul 12
to
Charles Packer <mai...@cpacker.org> wrote:
> First? I recall that private citizens have already paid
> billionaire-caliber amounts of money to ride fully into orbit (to
> the ISS, I think). But hey, the magic of journalism can of course
> make that bit of history disappear from the public consciousness for
> the purposes of the current Branson/Bezos story.

To the best of my knowledge, none of the several space tourists were
billionaires. Russia was selling rides into orbit for something like
$20 million. I can't afford that. You can't afford that. Probably
nobody on rasff can afford that. But plenty of non-billionaires can
afford it.

Bezos is of course riding one of his own rockets. But if he were to
pay $20 million for a ride from someone else, that would be as small
a proportion of his wealth as for someone with $1 million to buy a
Worldcon membership, or for someone with the median amount of wealth
for an American to buy a sandwich.

As I mentioned, his peak altitude will be less than half a millimeter
for each dollar he owns. Someone with "only" a million dollars can
reach a proportional altitude by claiming a staircase. Someone with
the median amount of wealth for an American can reach a proportional
altitude by standing on a chair.

Jibini Kula Tumbili Kujisalimisha

unread,
Jul 12, 2021, 6:43:50 PMJul 12
to
"Keith F. Lynch" <k...@KeithLynch.net> wrote in
news:scie1g$pl7$1...@reader1.panix.com:

> Charles Packer <mai...@cpacker.org> wrote:
>> First? I recall that private citizens have already paid
>> billionaire-caliber amounts of money to ride fully into orbit
>> (to the ISS, I think). But hey, the magic of journalism can of
>> course make that bit of history disappear from the public
>> consciousness for the purposes of the current Branson/Bezos
>> story.
>
> To the best of my knowledge, none of the several space tourists
> were billionaires. Russia was selling rides into orbit for
> something like $20 million. I can't afford that. You can't
> afford that. Probably nobody on rasff can afford that. But
> plenty of non-billionaires can afford it.

The first space tourist was Dennis Tito, who is estimated to be worth
a billion dollars now. How much he was worth in 2001 I do not know.

The firth was Charles Simonyi in 2007, currently estimated to be
worth $5.8 billion, so it seems quite likely he was a billionaire 14
years ago, as well. He was also a space tourist in 2009, which
further suggests that $30 million was a fairly trivial amount of
money for thim.

Guy Laliberté (a co-founder of Cirque du Soleil went up in 2009, and
is estimated to be worth $1.2 billion as of June 2020.

So it seems extremely likely that even if we consider 50 miles to be
"in outer space,' Branson still isn't the "first billionaire in
space."

Peter Trei

unread,
Jul 12, 2021, 6:55:15 PMJul 12
to
On Sunday, July 11, 2021 at 6:20:47 PM UTC-4, Keith F. Lynch wrote:
> Since when is 53.5 miles (86.1 kilometers) outer space? The official
> boundary has always been 100 kilometers. Branson hasn't been to
> space. Bezos still has the chance to be first.
>
> If Bezos reaches exactly 100 kilometers, that's less than half a
> millimeter of altitude for every dollar he has.

Keith is mistaken. There are two 'official' standards. NASA and the
USAF use 50 miles up as the requirement for astronaut wings. The rest
of the world uses 100km (~62 miles).

Pt

Peter Trei

unread,
Jul 12, 2021, 7:10:21 PMJul 12
to
SpaceX's Starship is targeting $10/kg and $2M/launch. Branson is
charging 250k for 6 minutes of weightlessness.

SpaceX should be able to offer 'A Day in Space' for a fraction of the price.

Pt

Jibini Kula Tumbili Kujisalimisha

unread,
Jul 12, 2021, 7:19:22 PMJul 12
to
Peter Trei <pete...@gmail.com> wrote in
news:b66b52ba-ec60-4d03...@googlegroups.com:
More important, SpzceX can offer an orbital flight, and Branson . .
. can't, so far. According to National Geographic, he's still using
solid rubber and laughing gas, which has abotu 1/10th the amount of
energy needed for orbit. It's completely dead end technology for
space flight. There's no road that leads to orbit using that fuel.

So far, all Branson has manager is an occasional stunt that
impresses the idiots in the news media. Is he taking money from
investors?

At least Musk can deliver what he hypes.

Tim Merrigan

unread,
Jul 12, 2021, 8:14:54 PMJul 12
to
Side thought, thread drift start.

Why wings? Wings are completely useless in space. Shouldn't the
symbol be something more appropriate, like a rocket?

Jibini Kula Tumbili Kujisalimisha

unread,
Jul 13, 2021, 12:01:43 PMJul 13
to
Tim Merrigan <tp...@ca.rr.com> wrote in
news:egmpeg9ujfqhldf3p...@4ax.com:

> On Mon, 12 Jul 2021 15:55:14 -0700 (PDT), Peter Trei
> <pete...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>>On Sunday, July 11, 2021 at 6:20:47 PM UTC-4, Keith F. Lynch
>>wrote:
>>> Since when is 53.5 miles (86.1 kilometers) outer space? The
>>> official boundary has always been 100 kilometers. Branson
>>> hasn't been to space. Bezos still has the chance to be first.
>>>
>>> If Bezos reaches exactly 100 kilometers, that's less than half
>>> a millimeter of altitude for every dollar he has.
>>
>>Keith is mistaken. There are two 'official' standards. NASA
>>and the USAF use 50 miles up as the requirement for astronaut
>>wings. The rest of the world uses 100km (~62 miles).
>>
>>Pt
>
> Side thought, thread drift start.
>
> Why wings? Wings are completely useless in space. Shouldn't
> the symbol be something more appropriate, like a rocket?

Air Force (who started it) tradition. Pilots get wings, why wouldn't
pilots who go even further get special wings?

And tradition is the most powerful force known to man.
Reply all
Reply to author
Forward
0 new messages