The world’s richest man, Jeff Bezos, has successfully travelled to space in his own rocket ship called New Shepard.
The Amazon founder was joined by brother Mark Bezos and Wally Funk, an 82-year-old pioneer of the space race, and an 18-year-old student.
The spacecraft lifted off on Tuesday afternoon from a private launch site near Van Horn, Texas.
They travelled in a capsule with massive windows, offering stunning views of the Earth.
The capsule reached a maximum altitude of around 107km before starting its descent, parachuting down to the West Texas desert.
"I want to thank every Amazon employee and every Amazon customer because you guys paid for all this," Jeff Bezos says on the Blue Origin flight. pic.twitter.com/uTeJhtPLwI— MSNBC (@MSNBC) July 20, 2021
When the capsule touched back down after the 10-minute, 10-second flight, Jeff exclaimed: “Best day ever!”
New Shepard – a rocket which has been ridiculed for resembling a penis – was built by Bezos' company Blue Origin, and was designed to boost the growing market for space tourism.
Bezos – and others in the “billionaire space race” – have been criticised for offering what some see as joyrides for the super-wealthy.
Critics say the money could be spent on employees or fighting climate change.
But, Bezos says he has an environmental vision.
“We need to take all heavy industry, all polluting industry and move it into space, and keep Earth as this beautiful gem of a planet that it is,” he told MSNBC.
"It’s going to take decades and decades to achieve, but you have to start, and big things start with small steps... that’s what this sub-orbital tourism mission allows us to do, it allows us to practice over and over.“