‘Mannequin Skywalker’ rides Blue Origin’s new crew capsule

SHARE ‘Mannequin Skywalker’ rides Blue Origin’s new crew capsule
space_blue_origin_73100479.jpg

An instrumented test dummy, named Mannequin Skywalker, was aboard Blue Origin’s New Shepard Crew Capsule 2.0 during a 10-minute suborbital flight Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2017. | Blue Origin via AP

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — Blue Origin’s ‘Mannequin Skywalker’ has rocketed almost all the way to space, just in time for the new Star Wars movie.

The aerospace company led by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos launched its New Shepard rocket Tuesday from West Texas for the seventh time. It marked the first flight, though, of the latest version of Blue Origin’s crew capsule, featuring big windows for future space tourists.

An instrumented test dummy was aboard, named Mannequin Skywalker and dressed in a blue — naturally — flight suit.

“He had a great ride,” Bezos said via Twitter.

The New Shepard rocket, named after the first American in space, Alan Shepard, landed back on the ground after the 10-minute suborbital flight. The capsule reached a peak altitude of 99.39 kilometers above sea level or 61.7 miles, just shy of the 100-kilometer or 62.1-mile mark that’s considered the start of true space.

Besides Mannequin Skywalker, the capsule carried a dozen experiments, including an Arduino Nano electronic computer board, designed and programmed by Colorado schoolchildren, and student artwork.

“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” opens in theaters Friday.

The Latest
Two men were fatally shot Friday in their vehicles in separate shootings about three miles apart on the South Side.
The league’s collective-bargaining agreement with the players, signed in 2020 and effective through the 2027 season, doesn’t include charter flights
The man, 38, was driving in the 500 block of West 95th Street when someone fired a gun from the sidewalk.
The man, 62, was in a stopped vehicle about 11:09 p.m. in the 800 block of West 71st Street when he was shot in the head.
He was found at 5:17 a.m. Saturday in the 3900 block of West Fillmore Street with a gunshot wound to the chest.