SpaceX will launch the first all-civilian crew to space next week on September 15th NET [no earlier than] 8:00 p.m. EDT. The Inspiration4 mission is funded by Shift4Payments founder Jared Isaacman who dreams of going to space and wants the voyage to be meaningful. He donated $100 million to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and hopes that his trip to space will inspire the world to donate to the hospital that provides life-saving treatment for free. “One of the key things we’ve focused one since Inspiration4 was first announced was how we will be able to make a significant contribution to help St. Jude cure childhood cancer here on Earth,” Isaacman stated. Their goal is raise a total of $200 million.
Inspiration4 Medical Chief Hayley Arceneaux was a former St. Jude patient; she survived bone cancer as a kid and now works at the hospital. All Inspiration4 crewmembers, Isaacman, Arceneaux, Dr. Sian Proctor, and Chris Sembroski, are taking meaningful items on their space tour aboard Crew Dragon, and a collection of items that will be auctioned to fundraise for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, including the first NFT (non-fungible token) song that will be played in space! “Every item we are bringing is going to help us reach our [fundraising] goal and allow us to share this experience with so many others who want to offer support," Isaacman said.
The minted NFT song is from Grammy award-winning rock band Kings of Leon. The auction to bid for the NFT and physical items that will be flown to space begins on September 9. All items can be bid on by visiting stjude.org/inspiration4. “The minted NFT, a never-before-released performance of 'Time in Disguise' from the band’s newest album, is among a handful of unique items that will go into orbit and be auctioned off on YellowHeart to support St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and its $200 million Inspiration4 fundraising campaign to accelerate research advancements and save more children worldwide,” representatives shared in a press release. “We are proud to support St. Jude and its Music Gives initiative,” said Kings of Leon in a statement, “We’re honored to participate in this historic journey in an effort to raise money for St. Jude, and we’re sending all our best to the crew of Inspiration4.” Arceneaux will play the NFT song as they orbit Earth aboard Crew Dragon.
A total of 50 virtual NFT art pieces will be flown to space, created by 50 different artists that will be auctioned on "Origin Protocol's NFT platform in collaboration with Subtractive, including an NFT that crew member Dr. Sian Proctor will bring into space that was also a piece of physical art that previously traveled to the Mariana Trench, making it the first piece of art that went to the furthest ocean depths and then into orbit," project representatives said. The physical items that will be flown to space aboard SpaceX’s Crew Dragon and auctioned by St. Jude are:
· Inspiration4 mission jackets featuring unique artwork by St. Jude patients, and original artwork by the Inspiration4 crew members, that were created by Space for Art Foundation co-founders artist Ian Cion and retired NASA astronaut Nicole Stott, and handmade by spacesuit replica artist Ryan Nagata. The "Back to Earth" book by Stott will also be auctioned.
The @inspiration4x crew lifts off to #space next week, and while they're in space you can bid on items in our September auction, including things traveling to space with them!— St. Jude (@StJude) September 10, 2021
Don't get left behind: https://t.co/56rLuXeRkj pic.twitter.com/dxanfdoMOy
· 66 pounds of hops that, upon return, will be used to brew an out-of-this world beer by the brewers of Samuel Adams. As the official beer of Inspiration4, Sam Adams has committed a maximum $100,000 donation to St. Jude.
· A Fisher Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Space Pen & Coin Set containing a piece of material from Apollo 11.
· A ukulele from Martin Guitar that crew member Chris Sembroski will play in space.
· A handful of plastic and plush STEM toys based on the five characters from the popular animated STEM series, “Space Racers.”
· A mini-astronaut plush that will be delivered to the winning bidder with an original collar designed by renowned artist Romero Britto.
· A TIME magazine with cover feature of the four Inspiration4 crew members that they will autograph after the SpaceX Dragon capsule returns.
Auction items including a jacket flown to #space, a signed copy of retired astronaut Nicole Stott's book and an autographed @TIME magazine featuring the @inspiration4x crew are up for bid until September 23. Don't get left behind: https://t.co/56rLuXeRkj pic.twitter.com/siIdJgi67h— St. Jude (@StJude) September 10, 2021
· IWC Schaffhausen has designed and donated four unique, space-themed Pilot’s Watch Chronographs representing the mission’s values of Leadership, Hope, Generosity and Prosperity. The Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Edition Inspiration4 watches will be worn by the four crew members on their journey into space, before being auctioned off to benefit St. Jude. List Source: Inspiration4 press kit. All Images Source: Inspiration4 & SpaceX
About the Author
Evelyn J. Arevalo joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover news as a Space Journalist and SpaceX Starbase Texas Correspondent. Evelyn is specialized in rocketry and space exploration. The main topics she covers are SpaceX and NASA.