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“I was once a kid with a dream”: Richard Branson blasts into space

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Well he finally did it. 17 years after Richard Branson first launched Virgin Galactic, the thrill-seeking billionaire has taken to the skies and reached space

In his boldest adventure yet, the 70 year old Richard Branson took off for the first stage of the flight.

On the ground, about 500 people watched on, including Richard Branson’s wife, children and grandchildren.

On board were his five crewmates from his Virgin Galactic space tourism company.

Richard Branson and his five crew mates.
Richard Branson and his five crew mates.

The space plane detached from the mother ship at an altitude of about 13km and fired its engine, reaching the edge of space about 88km up.

After a few minutes of weightlessness for the crew, the space plane is began its decent, set to end with a glide to a runway landing.

Richard Branson couldn’t contain his excitement, as he spoke on the journey back to earth.

Richard Branson’s message to children from space

He thanked his crew and remembered all those who had worked on the mammoth project.

After a decade of promises, the moment finally came for Richard Branson to unveil his spaceship for the people.

He said on board:: “To all you kids down there, I was once a kid with a dream. Now I’m up here, in a space ship!”

Customer spaceflight experience

As Branson took to space onboard Virgin Galactic, his official role for the journey will be “evaluating customer spaceflight experience”.

And that’s an important role – after all anyone who wants to rise Virgin Galactic will need to part with a quarter of a million dollars first, and that price is expected to rise.

Along with the two pilots, there is room for six passengers with a flight time of about an hour and a half.

The Virgin Galactic rocket ship detached from the mothership.
The Virgin Galactic rocket ship detached from the mothership.

The spaceship will just go over the 82 kilometres, which is where the US recognises someone as having been into space.

Then, passengers will get to experience about six minutes of weightlessness and seeing the curvature of the Earth and the darkness of space.

They will then descend, landing on a runway much like the old space shuttle or a normal passenger plane.

The new space race

Richard Branson’s adventure will pre-empt next week’s first flight for Blue Origin, as Jeff Bezos launches his space dreams.

Jeff and Blue Origin are promising a completely different experience for their customers.

Blue Origin’s New Shepard, which has no pilots and room for six passengers, reaches more than 100 kilometres high, which is the internationally recognised boundary of space.

Passengers on Blue Origin will get about three minutes to float around and feel like they are in space.

Might be half the time, but the price is 50,000 dollars cheaper than flying on Virgin Galactic.

But either way, the expensive thrill ride marks the beginning of earth’s commercial passenger trips into space.

Virgin Galactic doesn’t expect to start flying customers before next year.

Business

Why luxury brands are not feeling inflation

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New data shows luxury brands are not feeling the pinch of inflation, thanks to the ultra-rich indulging in their products

Luxury brands are not worried about the impact of the global economic meltdown.

While prices of food and gas have skyrocketed, spare a thought for the ultra-rich dealing with the rising cost of sneakers and sports cars.

High end retailers like Dior, Louis Vuitton and Versace are all reporting strong sales and are hiking their profit forecasts.

The upbeat view is at odds with fears for the global economy.

However, this is nothing new, in fact it’s in line with past economic slowdowns according to the experts.

The rich are often the last to feel the impacts of a tightening economy, while spending among lower income consumers is squeezed by inflation.

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Johnson & Johnson will stop selling talcum baby powder

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Amid a rising number of lawsuits, Johnson & Johnson will officially cease production of its talcum baby powder.

Company executives say the decision follows a severe decline in sales right around the world.

The move also follows a number of lawsuits which claim the product causes cancer due to its contamination with asbestos.

Mined from the earth, Talc and lies very close to where carcinogenic asbestos comes from.

J&J says demand has fallen due to so-called ‘misinformation’ about the powder’s safety.

“We stand firmly behind the decades of independent scientific analysis by medical experts around the world that confirms talc-based Johnson’s baby powder is safe, does not contain asbestos, and does not cause cancer,” it said in a statement.

But an investigation by Reuters back in 2018 discovered the organisation knew for decades that asbestos was present in its talc products.

The global shift away from talcum powder comes more than two years after the healthcare giant ended sales of the product in both the U.S. and the UK.

The company says the powder will now be created from cornstarch.

“As part of a worldwide portfolio assessment, we have made the commercial decision to transition to an all cornstarch-based baby powder portfolio,” it said in a statement.

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Twitter will crack down on false reporting ahead of U.S. Midterms

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Twitter is seeking to put the truth first as this November’s mid-terms fast approach

Twitter says false and misleading posts will be fact-checked in a bid to promote accurate reporting.

Twitter will apply its ‘civic integrity policy’, which was first rolled out in 2018.

The policy stops users from posting misleading content that can dissuade people from voting.

There will also be a crack down on claims that undermine the public’s confidence in the results.

It follows the 2020 Presidential election, where the company was accused of not doing enough to stop the spread of misinformation.

All 435 seats in the U.S. House will be up for grabs alongside around a third of senate seats.

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