Japanese billionaire looking for 8 people for SpaceX moon flight
dearMoon is scheduled to fly in 2023
A Japanese billionaire has announced he is looking for eight people to join him on Elon Musk's SpaceX flight around the moon in 2023.
Yusaku Maezawa, a fashion mogul and art collector, was named as the first private passenger due to be flown around the moon with SpaceX back in 2018 after agreeing to pay a substantial - but undisclosed - fee for his seat.
As well as his own place, Maezawa also paid for eight other people to join him on the dearMoon flight, which is due for launch in two years. He had originally intended to take five "artists" with him, but has now revised his plans, opening it up to applicants from the general public.
"I'm inviting you to join me on this mission," he said in a video posted to his Twitter account. "Eight of you from all around the world.
"The mission will take place 2 years from now, in 2023. I want people from all kinds of backgrounds to join."
— Yusaku Maezawa (MZ) (@yousuckMZ) March 2, 2021
In the full version of the video, which was shared to his YouTube, he explained his reason for adjusting his plans.
"Two years ago I said that I would like to invite artists from around the world to come along with me. That was the original plan, but it has since evolved.
"Why has it evolved? I began to wonder... Who do I mean by artists? The more I thought about it, the more ambiguous it became.
"I began to think that every single person doing something creative could be called an artist. That was the conclusion I came to."
Maezawa also explains that applicants must meet two key criteria if they are to be considered for the voyage.
"First of all, whatever activity you are into, by going into space I hope that you can push its envelope, to help other people ad greater society in some way," he said.
"Are you satisfied with what you're doing right now? By going to space could you do something that's even better, even bigger?
"Secondly, you have to be able to support other crew members who share similar aspirations.
"These two criteria will be key in selecting the 8 crew members."
Anyone interested should register their details here. They will then receive an email with more details about the application process.