Mumbai, April 12: Pilot Gopichand Thotakura is set to create history by being the first Indian to travel into space as a tourist in a historic leap towards the space. Thotakura and five other applicants were chosen to be a member of the exclusive crew on Blue Origin's New Shephard-25 (NS-25) mission, which will take them outside Earth's atmosphere. The prestigious group of 31 candidates who have crossed the Karman line, the barrier separating Earth's atmosphere from space, includes entrepreneur and pilot Gopichand Thotakura.

Who is Gopichand Thotakura?

Having been an aviation enthusiast since his early years, Thotakura disregarded social conventions by becoming a pilot before learning the skill of driving. To pursue his interest, he earned a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Currently based near Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, United States, the 30-year-old Vijayawada native runs Preserve Life Corp, a worldwide hub for applied health and holistic wellbeing. "Gopi is a pilot and aviator who learned how to fly before he could drive. Gopi pilots bush, aerobatic, and seaplanes, as well as gliders and hot air balloons, and has served as an international medical jet pilot. A lifelong traveller, his most recent adventure took him to the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro", Blue Origins mentions in Thotakura's description. NASA To Fly Indian Astronauts to International Space Station; We Want Our Astronauts To Get Trained at US Facilities, Says ISRO Chief S Somnath (Watch Video).

About Blue Origin's New Shephard-25 (NS-25) Mission

The NS-25 mission represents a new age of sustainability in space exploration from an environmental perspective. "Nearly 99% of New Shepard's dry mass is reused, including the booster, capsule, engine, landing gear, and parachutes. New Shepard's engine is fueled by highly efficient liquid oxygen and hydrogen. During flight, the only byproduct is water vapor with no carbon emissions", Blue Origins stated in a statement. India Space Mission: India Plans 30 Space Missions Including ‘Commercial and Non-Commercial’ in Next 14 Months From Indian Spaceport in Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh, Says Report.

Blue Origin's organisation, Club for the Future, will give each participant in the NS-25 mission a postcard representing the goals and hopes of young minds worldwide. Moreover, former Air Force Captain Ed Dwight, who was chosen as the nation's first Black astronaut candidate by US President John F. Kennedy in 1961 but was never given the chance to travel to space, is also a part of the mission.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 12, 2024 02:42 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website