When Hollywood actor William Shatner flies to space on a Blue Origin suborbital rocket tomorrow, he will carry a bit of StarTrek with him. Shatner, who played Captain James T Kirk in the cult classic TV series StarTrek, is due to become the first member of the iconic show’s cast to journey to the final frontier as a guest aboard a Blue Origin suborbital rocket. The Star Trek star will carry with him paper tricorders and communicators that were crafted by Blue Origin founder, Jeff Bezos, when he was just nine-years-old. Mr Bezos revealed this in an Instagram post shared this morning, thanking William Shatner — or “Bill” — for agreeing to take his childhood toys to space.
“I made these tricorders and communicator to play Star Trek with my friends when I was 9 years old, and my incredible mom saved them for 48 years,” Jeff Bezos wrote, sharing a photo with William Shatner and then a glimpse of the Star Trek devices he crafted almost five decades ago.
In the fictional universe of Star Trek, a tricorder is a multifunction hand-held device issued by the Starfleet organisation, while communicators were used for voice communication.
Mr Bezos revealed that his mother dug out his old Star Trek paper devices and William Shatner agreed to take them to space. “Please don’t judge me for the artwork. Thank you, Bill!” the Blue Origin founder wrote.
“That’s an incredible story. Kudos to you, your mom and Mr. Shatner. May the flight be a successful one tomorrow!” wrote one Instagram user.
“What a moment,” another said.
Blue Origin’s decision to invite one of the most recognizable galaxy-faring characters from science fiction for its second crewed flight has helped maintain excitement around the nascent space tourism sector.
At 90, William Shatner will become the oldest person to ever go to space. His trip will take him and the NS-18 rocket crew just beyond the Karman line, 62 miles (100 kilometers) high, where they will experience four minutes of weightlessness and gaze out at the curvature of the planet.
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