Inspiration4's ‘all-civilian' spacefliers share orbital activities — including a ukulele solo

Inspiration4 crewmates Jared Isaacman, Hayley Arceneaux, Chris Sembroski and Sian Proctor check in via a video link. (Inspiration4 Photo)

On the eve of their scheduled return from orbit, four amateur spacefliers brought the world up to date on their activities — an out-of-this-world routine that focused on raising money for charity and gazing out the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule’s bubble-shaped cupola window.

Inspiration4 crew member Chris Sembroski, a Lockheed Martin data engineer who hails from Everett, Wash., even strummed a serenade on a custom-made ukulele.

“I can play a little for you,” he said over a space-to-Earth video link. “You can turn your volume down if you wish, but I’ll give it a shot.”

Sembroski’s music sounded just fine; nevertheless, he followed up the performance with a promise. “It’s still before coffee, so it’ll get better as the day goes on,” he said.

The ukulele, like many of the other items that the foursome brought with them for Wednesday’s launch atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, will be sold off to raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis.

Supporting St. Jude’s mission to treat childhood cancer is the philanthropic goal behind the Inspiration4 mission, as conceived by Jared Isaacman, Shift4 Payments’ billionaire founder and CEO. Isaacman, an amateur pilot who created his own private fleet of fighter jets, is paying the multimillion-dollar cost of the mission and serves as its commander.

Sembroski was added to the flight when a college buddy of his won a charity sweepstakes for a ticket to space — and essentially gave the ticket to Sembroski instead. The two other citizen spacefliers are Sian Proctor, an educator and artist who won an online competition for users of Shift4’s online payment system; and Hayley Arceneaux, a cancer survivor who is now a physician assistant at St. Jude.

This flight made Arceneaux, 29, the youngest American in space as well as the first person to go into space with a prosthesis (a titanium rod that was placed in her leg during cancer treatment). Proctor is the first Black female space pilot. And taken together, Inspiration4’s foursome is the first crew to go into orbit without a professional astronaut in their midst.

During their flight, the spacefliers are conducting a series of medical experiments, including tests of ultrasound monitors for checking intercranial pressure — which is a growing concern for long-term spaceflight. They’re having their vital signs checked, and samples will be studied to look for for changes in the microbiome.

Much of the mission’s to-do list had to do with fundraising and outreach for St. Jude: Arceneaux presided over a video meetup with cancer patients and their families. “I just want you all to know that we’re doing this you,” she said. “We are thinking about you so much. I want to tell you that I was a little girl going through cancer treatment just like a lot of you, and if I can do this, you can do this.”

Isaacman placed the first sports bets made from space, with the winnings earmarked for the hospital. (He won one of the bets on Thursday night, but will have to wait to find out if his Super Bowl bet pays off.) And Sembroski’s ukulele won’t be the only item auctioned off for charity: Proctor’s space-made artwork, an autographed copy of Time magazine and dozens of digital NFT creations will also come up for sale.

Clones of the mission’s zero-G indicator — a spacesuit-clad plush puppy that has become the mission’s unofficial mascot — were selling for $24 in St. Jude’s online gift shop. (The pups are currently sold out, but the hospital is promising to restock the shelves.) Meanwhile, the Samuel Adams brewery is making a $100,000 donation to St. Jude in return for getting the chance to turn 66 pounds of space-flown hops into a limited-edition batch of beer.

The schedule still leaves plenty of time for doing tricks in zero gravity and taking turns looking through the SpaceX Crew Dragon’s cupola, which was added for this mission because the spacecraft doesn’t have to dock with the International Space Station — as was the case for SpaceX’s first three crewed flights to orbit. The Crew Dragon in use for this mission, dubbed Resilience, had its initial outing as the conveyance for a space station crew last year.

By all accounts, Resilience is performing flawlessly in autonomous mode, and there’s been no report that Isaacman has had to take the controls. The spacecraft has been reaching a maximum altitude of 585 kilometers (364 miles), which is 100 miles higher than the International Space Station and the highest that humans have flown since the space shuttle Discovery visited the Hubble Space Telescope in 1999.

Splashdown in the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of Florida, is currently scheduled for 7:06 p.m. ET (4:06 p.m. PT) Saturday. Here are other updates on the crew’s orbital activities from Inspiration4’s Twitter account:

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.Update your settings here to see it.This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.Update your settings here to see it.This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.Update your settings here to see it.This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.Update your settings here to see it.

More from GeekWire:

    Internet Explorer Channel Network
    News Related


    Nasa calls for new ways to announce discovery of alien life amid fears of misunderstandings

    (Independent) Nasa scientists have called for the world to agree on a productive way to announce the potential discovery of alien life on another planet. Various representatives of the space ... Read more »

    'Best budget tablet, period!': Amazon's top-rated Fire 8 tablet is on sale for just $80

    Looking for more of the best deals, sales and product recommendations? Sign up for Yahoo Lifestyle Canada’s newsletter! Save $30 on the Amazon Fire HD 8 Tablet. Images via Amazon. ... Read more »

    Where Transcendental Numbers Hide in Everyday Math

    The transcendental number π is as familiar as it is ubiquitous, but how does Euler’s number e transcend the ordinary? Read more »

    Rishi Sunak accused of putting ‘prosecco before parents' as alcohol prices set to fall

    Rishi Sunak delivers his budget to the House of Commons. (PA) Rishi Sunak has been accused of putting “prosecco before parents” amid criticism of plans to cut the price on ... Read more »

    Our Yorkshire Farm couple address marriage speculation

    Our Yorkshire Farm stars Amanda Owen and husband Clive have released a statement following reports speculating about their marriage. The couple, who have been married for 21 years and have ... Read more »

    Alice Evans accuses estranged husband Ioan Gruffudd of having three-year affair

    Actress Alice Evans has accused her estranged husband Ioan Gruffudd of having a three-year affair before they split up. Alice made the claims on Twitter after her 48-year-old ex posted ... Read more »

    Florida judge sends Trump suit against Twitter to California

    FILE – In this July 11, 2021, file photo former President Donald Trump speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Dallas, Texas. Trump wants a federal judge in ... Read more »

    Cops are collapsing after touching fentanyl, but you can't overdose from skin contact. The likelier story? Panic attacks.

    San Diego County Sheriff’s Deputy David Faiivae gets aid from an officer after being exposed to fentanyl on July 3, 2021. Experts say it’s unlikely that Faiivae was overdosing. San ... Read more »

    Serving Met Police officer Adam Zaman charged with rape

    Pc Adam Zaman, 28, who is based on the East Area Command Unit, was charged by the City of London Police . A serving Metropolitan Police officer has been charged ... Read more »

    12 best Bluetooth speakers for every budget: Portable, wireless and waterproof

    We’ve tested mostly for audio excellence but also for ease of setup and snazziness of design (iStock/The Independent) What’s the best way to listen to music? We’re not talking about ... Read more »

    EU court fines Poland €1m a day over judiciary row

    EU court fines Poland 1 million euros per day over judiciary row – EPA-EFE/Shutterstock /Shutterstock The EU's top court on Wednesday ordered Poland to pay one million euros a day ... Read more »

    Anthony Joshua Accepts Tyson Fury's Offer to Train Him – Under One Condition

    Since his unanimous defeat against Oleksandr Usyk back in September we haven't heard too much from Anthony Joshua. Sure, there have been rumblings that he's been travelling around the US ... Read more »

    SpaceX to fix leaky toilets ahead of planned launch at the weekend

    The launch, from Cape Canaveral on Sunday, will mark SpaceX’s fourth launch of Nasa astronauts (REUTERS) SpaceX is having to fix its leaking toilets ahead of its planned launch at ... Read more »

    Emmerdale star Danny Miller and fiancée Steph Jones welcome baby

    Photo credit: @danny_b_miller – Instagram Danny Miller is now a dad after welcoming a baby with his fiancé. The Emmerdale actor announced that his partner Steph Jones had given birth ... Read more »

    People who eat meat report lower levels of depression and anxiety than vegans do, a recent analysis suggests

    A man eats his lunch at Holycow steak house in Jakarta, Indonesia on December 7, 2012. Reuters/Enny Nuraheni A recent analysis suggests a link between meat-free diets and poorer mental ... Read more »

    Tech & Science Daily: The world's first ‘thinking' robot

    (Yuichiro Yada, Shusaku Yasuda, and Hirokazu Takahashi) The world’s first ever ‘thinking’ robot has just been created. Using brain-like neurons grown in a lab, Japanese scientists managed to get the ... Read more »

    Key budget announcements: Alcohol, fuel and tax changes revealed in chancellor's statement

    Here are the key points from Chancellor Rishi Sunak's budget speech: • The chancellor says there are “challenging” months ahead, adding that inflation in September was 3.1% and is likely ... Read more »

    At McKinsey, Widespread Furor Over Work With Planet's Biggest Polluters

    A firefighter watches as a wildfire burns Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021, in Goleta, Calif. A wildfire raging through Southern California coastal mountains threatened ranches and rural homes and kept a ... Read more »

    Budget 2021: Sunak resets UK's spending focus for a post-covid economy

    Watch: Rishi Sunak delivers his Budget speech after PMQs UK chancellor Rishi Sunak laid out sweeping plans for the next three financial years in his Autumn Budget and Spending Review ... Read more »

    'Universe' and 'The Love Trap': The 5 best things on TV on Wednesday, 27 October

    ‘Universe’ and ‘The Love Trap’ are in Wednesday’s TV highlights. (BBC/ITV) Professor Brian Cox opens out eyes to the wonders of the solar system again tonight in new BBC Two ... Read more »

    Great white shark bites a case of mistaken identity, study shows

    Great white shark attacks are rare, and when they do occur, they are sometimes fatal. But attacks against the human species are often a result of mistaken identity, new research ... Read more »

    SpaceX Needed to Fix the Toilet Before NASA Astronauts Launch

    A image provided by NASA shows the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule approaching the International Space Station for docking in April 2021. (NASA via The New York Times) NASA can’t call ... Read more »

    Budget 2021: Rishi Sunak resets priorities as he unveils autumn spending review

    Watch: Rishi Sunak delivers his Budget speech after PMQs UK chancellor Rishi Sunak laid out sweeping plans for the next three financial years in his Autumn Budget and Spending Review ... Read more »

    Sally Nugent announced as Louise Minchin's replacement on 'BBC Breakfast'

    Sally Nugent arriving for the BBC Sports Personality of the year 2019 at The P&J Live, Aberdeen. (Ian Rutherford/PA Images via Getty Images) BBC Breakfast has announced Sally Nugent as ... Read more »

    Brutal crash as spectator runs into cyclist at El Hierro cycle race

    A cyclist was involved in a brutal crash with a spectator at the finish line of a race in the Canary Islands, which left both the rider and the woman ... Read more »

    Alan Cumming says ‘Hollywood saved me' from feeling suicidal

    Alan Cumming shared how low he felt on the day of his GoldenEye audition. (Getty Images) Alan Cumming has opened up on feeling suicidal the day that he auditioned for ... Read more »

    Wetherspoons to slash prices on certain drinks in November

    Wetherspoons pubs across the UK are set to slash prices in November. Photo: Oli Scarff/AFP via Getty Wetherspoons (JDW.L) has said its pubs are set to lower prices on a ... Read more »

    SpaceX's malfunctioning toilet spilled urine onto fans during Inspiration4 trip

    © SpaceX inspiration4 florida.jpg New details have been revealed about the toilet on board SpaceX’s Inspiration4 craft which broke while the first all-civilian crew were in orbit. Last month it ... Read more »

    Trailer released for The Railway Children Return

    The first trailer for The Railway Children Return has been released ahead of the sequel to the much-loved 1970 family film, which is due to hit cinemas in 2022. Read more »

    Protesters from Insulate Britain covered in ink as they block A40

    Insulate Britain has blocked part of the A40 in West London after declaring the M25 a site of nonviolent civil resistance yesterday. Members of the protest group are covered in ... Read more »

    The youth movement grows up. Climate Fight podcast part four transcript

    What effect does youth climate activism have on negotiations such as COP26 in Glasgow? John Gomez via Shutterstock This is a transcript of The youth movement grows up, part four ... Read more »

    Scientists find harmful hormone-disrupting chemicals in US fast foods

    (AFP via Getty Images) Hormone-disrupting chemicals, associated with adverse health outcomes, are abundant in meals available at popular American fast food restaurants, says a new study that calls for regulatory ... Read more »

    Harvey Weinstein used Good Will Hunting to mess with Robin Williams' career, new book claims

    Harvey Weinstein pulled a Robin Williams film from cinemas so that the actor wouldn’t make as much money, it’s been claimed. Writer, director and actor Kevin Smith claims in his ... Read more »

    This Dream Vacation Hotspot Is Spiraling Into a Deadly Cartel Battlefield

    DANIEL SLIM/AFP via Getty Images Two foreign female tourists were caught in a crossfire between rival crime groups and shot to death last Thursday in the high-end resort town of ... Read more »

    Covid: Ministers put off decisions on restrictions and mandatory masks for two weeks

    Covid: Ministers put off decisions on restrictions and mandatory masks for two weeks Ministers will not make a decision on Covid-19 restrictions for two weeks until the impact of half-term ... Read more »

    Strictly's' Kai Widdrington addresses AJ Odudu romance rumours

    Watch: Strictly's Kai Widdrington addresses AJ Odudu romance rumours Strictly Come Dancing star Kai Widdrington has spoken out about romance rumours with AJ Odudu, admitting they wanted people to think ... Read more »

    Trump got de-platformed. Could the ‘decentralized crypto cloud' save him?

    The blank check company that announced a planned merger to take former President Trump's social media project public has seen shares give back about half of their impressive 1200% rally ... Read more »

    COVID: increased restrictions in the UK look inevitable as winter arrives

    I Wei Huang/Shutterstock COVID-19 cases, hospitalisations and deaths have been rising in the UK, pressurising a health service that’s already working hard to treat the backlog of non-COVID patients that ... Read more »

    Where does the youth climate movement go next? Climate Fight podcast part 4

    MikeDotta/Shutterstock Locked out of conferences and company boardrooms, young people have tried to influence the international response to the climate crisis with strikes and protests. What effect does this youth ... Read more »

    SpaceX aims to fix leaky toilets before astronauts blast off at weekend

    SpaceX is facing toilet troubles in its capsules before it launches more astronauts into space. Related: SpaceX could make Elon Musk world’s first trillionaire, says Morgan Stanley The company and ... Read more »
    On you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic