Japan’s punk billionaire Yusaku Maezawa revealed as SpaceX moon tourist

Gonna take a ride across the moon Aerospace company plans to rocket mystery guest into space

A SpaceX rocket possibly similar to this one could be launching for a lunar fly-by in the not-so-distant future

Had SpaceX followed through with that plan, it could have returned humans to the moon near the 50th anniversary of NASA's historic Apollo 8 mission around the moon in December 1968.

"I wish to create incredible works of art for humankind", Maezawa said.

Neither Maezawa nor Musk would disclose the price of the flight, but Musk said that Maezawa - who had been one of the two customers for SpaceX's earlier plans for a circumlunar flight on a Dragon announced almost 18 months ago, but since shelved - had already made a down payment. "At the same time, I did not want to have such a fantastic experience by myself". The man is Yusaku Maezawa, and he's a very, very wealth Japanese man who plans on inviting up to eight others along for the ride around the Moon and back to Earth. The excited future space traveler exclaimed at the event, "I choose to go to the moon". "These artists will be asked to create something when they return to the Earth and these masterpieces will inspire the dreamers within all of us", Maezawa said during a press conference at SpaceX headquarters. He's yet to choose the artists who will accompany him.

Maezawa then said, "Yeah, yeah, yeah - please, please".

"It's unsafe to be clear", Musk said. Theoretically, it's capable of carrying a 150 ton payload Mars and returning with 50 tons on board, but its first flight will be significantly less burdened.

While space flight is a more risky proposition - with Maezawa in his late 40s by 2023 - he said there are no training plans yet in place.

The BFS is said to be able to hold 100 passengers.

SpaceX founder and chief executive Elon Musk outlined a somewhat different mission previous year. "Together with Earth's top artists, I will be heading to the Moon... just a little earlier than everyone else", Maezawa wrote on his website for the project, #dearMoon.

During its event tonight, the company put a name to the first private passenger who will fly around the moon.

The company, led by billionaire Elon Musk, planned to reveal the person's identity during a live webcast at 6 p.m. Monday.

The 42-year-old is worth an estimated $2.9 billion and has been known to drop unfathomable amounts of money on art - including a Jean-Michel Basquiat purchase in 2016 for more than $57 million. This makes easy for Zozotown's customers to fit into its clothes and has made the brand immensely popular. "I don't know", Musk said.

This lunar mission - a flyby, not a landing - represents "an important step toward enabling access for everyday people who dream of traveling to space", SpaceX said in a tweet.

He will become the first non-American to orbit the moon.

"The reason for creating SpaceX was to accelerate the advent of humanity becoming a space bearing civilisations, to advance rocket technology to become a multiplanet species and becoming a true space bearing species", Musk said.

The tourism announcement comes as the company is racing to meet a tight deadline to start flying astronauts to and from the International Space Station aboard its workhorse Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon spacecraft.

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