SpaceX’s dearMoon mission has pitted two brothers against each other. One of the siblings said he was shocked to learn they were both competing for a seat on the flight.

Charlie Denison-Pender (left) trying on one of two exact replicas of Neil Armstrong’s space suit next to his brother Max.

  • Two British brothers are competing for a seat on SpaceX’s all-civilian flight round the moon.
  • The pair applied separately, later discovering they’d be competing against each other.
  • “I wasn’t expecting him to want to go to the moon,” said one of the brothers about his sibling.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Sometimes competition is healthy – but perhaps less so when you’ve unknowingly pitted yourself against your own sibling to take part in a once-in-a lifetime opportunity.

Max and Charlie Denison-Pender are two brothers locked in rivalry for a place on Elon Musk’s first civilian flight round the moon, which is slated for 2023. The trip is poised to last six days: three days to get to the moon and loop round the back of it, and three days to return to Earth.

It was first announced in 2018 that SpaceX planned to launch a private passenger named Yusaku Maezawa around the moon.

Earlier this year, Maezawa, a Japanese billionaire, released more details: he would be chartering the flight, now known as the dearMoon project, and was seeking eight people to join him.

He then announced an open competition for people to apply for the tickets. Originally, Maezawa said he would give the seats to artists but is now broadening the search.

The application process is simple and involves filling out a form that asks for basic information like name, email address, and country. It also asks the applicant which of Maezawa’s social media accounts they follow.

Eager to acquire a seat on the flight, both brothers entered the competition – separately.

Amid a few giggles, Charlie told Insider: “I wasn’t expecting him to want to go to the moon and things because I’ve always been the one interested in space. I guess he has too – but unknown to me.”

When asked about their rivalry, Charlie said: “We’re competitive, but in a very friendly way.”

For Charlie, though, entering the competition means more than just traveling on a historic flight round the moon. As a student of aerospace engineering at Brunel University, Charlie has ambitions to transform the future of travel beyond Earth.

“The reason why I’m interested in going on the flight is because one day I hope to start a space airliner,” he said.

He added that space travel, in his view, will mimic the nature of commercial travel in the future. He hopes to be one of the first people to contribute to that development. “Going on this trip would provide me with raw inspiration, adventure, but also a first-hand look into the sort of standards that you need to be meeting for commercial space travel.”

Meanwhile, Max, an artist, has been hard at work on his end-of-year exhibition. His interest in flying to the moon came as a complete shock to Charlie, given his creative background.

When asked how he’d feel if Max won the seat instead of him, Charlie answered: “I’d be secretly quite annoyed but also very happy for him at the same time.”

But such travels are not without risks. Although a SpaceX Starship prototype did finally land successfully this month, there have also been several failed landings. One recent incident involved a rocket exploding upon landing, which sent debris flying in the air.

Then, this month, pieces of a runaway Chinese rocket crashed down on the Indian Ocean. Although it was unmanned, it still highlights the dangers of space travel.

But Charlie seemed unbothered. “Generally, I’m pretty confident in Elon Musk and SpaceX, because he’s been doing groundbreaking things for a long time and throughout the Starship prototypes and the testing, you can see the progress each time,” he said.

He added: “I’ve always been quite adventurous and a bit of a risk-taker so even if there was a risk, I would still do it because I’m passionate about it. So, not too worried about things like that.”

As previously reported by Insider, Maezawa said the mission will include 10 to 12 people in total, including the eight civilians he will select.

The eight crew members will be chosen at the end of June and training will begin shortly thereafter, the website for applications said. Preparation for the mission will last until “lift off,” which is scheduled for the first part of 2023.

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Boeing CEO took home $21 million in compensation last year despite plans to let go of 30,000 employees

Boeing HQ
The company logo hangs above an entrance to the headquarters of The Boeing Company on January 29, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois.

  • David Calhoun, CEO of Boeing, was awarded compensation of $21 million last year, even as the company reported a $12 billion net loss.
  • The company also announced it would lay off about 30,000 employees.
  • A regulatory filing for Boeing says the CEO’s total compensation last year is estimated to be 158 times that of the company’s median employee.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Boeing CEO David Calhoun received more than $21 million in compensation last year while announcing plans to lay off about 30,000 workers.

The company reported a $12 billion loss in 2020, following an abysmal year due to a drop in demand for travel because of the coronavirus pandemic, a slump in deliveries of new planes, and the worldwide grounding of its 737 Max following two deadly accidents.

Over the past year, Boeing, the world’s largest aerospace company, has announced it would let go of about 30,000 employees through layoffs and attrition. Calhoun earlier this month instituted a voluntary layoff plan to help cut costs as the coronavirus complicates the company’s recovery from its 737 Max crisis.

In a letter to employees, Calhoun said recent events have left the company in ‘uncharted waters’ and that cutting staff now will help the planemaker adjust to the smaller aerospace market likely to exist after the pandemic.

Calhoun, who became CEO in January 2020, declined a salary and performance bonus for the majority of 2021, but he still received stock benefits worth more than $21 million, according to a regulatory filing. Calhoun also received $269,231 in salary for the first three months of the year and about $290,000 in other compensation.

Calhoun’s total compensation last year with the estimated stock awards is estimated to be 158 times that of the company’s median employee, a filing showed.

Boeing’s stock price has fallen more than 70% in the past year.

The company did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

But a company spokesperson told the New York Times that “Dave obviously gave up a lot.”

Boeing’s cash woes are linked to a steep drop in net aircraft sales. In 2020 alone, Boeing delivered 157 planes. It was the lowest number of planes delivered since 1984. Boeing received more than 650 cancellation orders last year and removed more than 1,000 planes from the market.

US regulators in December lifted a 22-month grounding order for the company’s embattled 737 Max that was instituted after two crashes that resulted in hundreds dead. Then, earlier this month, Boeing announced that some of the Max planes were facing “a potential electrical issue” and recommended that 16 airlines immediately ground those jets so the issue could be resolved. At the time, few other details were released.

Calhoun is one of numerous CEOs who’s received millions of dollars in compensation in 2020. The median pay across more than 300 of the country’s top public companies was around $13.7 million last year, Insider’s Anna Cooban reported.

Insider’s Graham Rapier contributed to this report.

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A secretive SpaceX investor has scored a 75% stock gain in the past 3 weeks

elon musk spacex
Elon Musk, the founder of SpaceX.

A SpaceX investor has seen its stock price surge 75% in the past three weeks for no apparent reason.

International Holdings’ market capitalization has soared to a record $43 billion as a result, surpassing the market value of First Abu Dhabi Bank – one of the region’s biggest lenders.

IHC owns or part-owns businesses across multiple industries including food packaging, military equipment, and air conditioning. Last year it purchased a 94% stake in Falcon CI IV LP, a private equity fund in the Cayman Islands that has invested in Elon Musk’s SpaceX, according to Reuters.

The holding company’s shares are closely held by Emiratis and no analysts cover the company, according to Bloomberg, making it tough to diagnose what’s behind the recent stock move.

Century Financial’s investment chief, Vijay Valecha, told Bloomberg that IHC’s investments are “audacious and sometimes baffling” but its bosses have “delivered the goods” so far.

IHC’s stock has climbed from 50 dirhams ( $13.60) on March 22 to 87.50 as of Thursday, after trading as high as 94 dirhams on Wednesday. It has more than doubled in price this year already, after more than doubling last year.

The company’s gains might reflect the fact that its more than tripled its revenue and more than doubled its net profit last year.

Its outperformance coincides with Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed al-Nahyan becoming the company’s president. The Sheikh is also a national security advisor to the UAE and is part of the country’s royalty – his brother is the crown prince of Abu Dhabi.

Additionally, he holds leadership positions at IHC’s biggest (and only direct) shareholder, Royal Group, and at First Abu Dhabi Bank.

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Sigma Labs soars 200% after signing deal with Lockheed Martin for the software company’s PrintRite3D product

Wall Street.
Big Tech recovers after a rough day Wednesday on Wall Street.

Shares of Sigma Labs, a commercial 3D metal printing software company, soared 200% on Monday after it announced a deal for its product with aerospace and defense firm Lockheed Martin.

Lockheed Martin Space Additive Design & Manufacturing Center awarded the software company a contract for an initial system of its PrintRite3D.

PrintRite3D is an in-process quality assurance system that uses machine learning to detect any anomalies in 3D printing. It collects and processes data that users can analyze and inspect in real-time, and, if necessary, implement corrections on the spot.

As part of the contract, Bethesda, Maryland-based Lockheed Martin will assess the workability of PrintRite3D in supporting its defense and space programs. The value of the contract was not disclosed.

Lockheed’s center based in Sunnyvale, California supports the entire space portfolio of the company. The Space Additive Design & Manufacturing Center also is responsible for the research and development of affordable satellite components.

“After review of our needs and potential solutions, we selected the Sigma PrintRite3D system because of its robust analysis capabilities, quality assurance solutions, data capture technology, and scalability across various OEM 3D printing platforms,” said Kristi Farley, Lockheed Martin Space vice president of spacecraft and missile engineering. “Assurance of print quality and repeatability is essential to the critical missions that we support.”

Shares of Sigma Labs traded higher by 167% to $8.53 as of 2:36 pm ET.

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Watch a Virgin Orbit rocket successfully launch from beneath the wing of a Boeing 747, marking the latest entrant to the commercial space race

Virgin Orbit Boeing
“Cosmic Girl” departed from California’s Mojave Air and Space Port, carrying a LauncherOne rocket under its wing

  • Virgin Orbit launched its first rocket to successfully reach Earth orbit on Sunday.
  • The rocket launched from a modified Boeing 747 and carried 10 small satellites for NASA.
  • “A new gateway to space has just sprung open!” Virgin Orbit CEO Dan Hart said.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Richard Branson’s Virgin Orbit launched its first rocket to successfully reach Earth orbit on Sunday, eight months after its previous attempt failed.

The next step is using the rocket for commercial services, the company said.

Rather than launching the rocket from a traditional launch pad, Virgin Orbit used an “air launch” from under the wing of a modified Boeing 747 jumbo jet.

The rocket brought 10 small satellites sponsored by NASA into orbit.

The rocket had “for Eve” printed on the side as a tribute to Eve Branson, Richard Branson’s mother, who passed away earlier this month.

The converted jumbo jet, named Cosmic Girl, launched the LauncherOne rocket while flying over the Pacific Ocean, just under an hour after it departed from California’s Mojave Air and Space Port.

The 70-foot, two-stage rocket then ignited its engine and reached low-Earth orbit at just before 12 p.m. PST.

“Everyone on the team who is not in mission control right now is going absolutely bonkers,” Virgin Orbit tweeted. “Even the folks on comms are trying really hard not to sound too excited.”

Both Gen. Jay Raymond, the Chief of Space Operations at the US Space Force, and Elon Musk, CEO of rival aerospace company SpaceX, tweeted their congratulations.

Read more: The space industry will grow by over $1 trillion in the next decade, Bank of America says. Here are the 14 stocks best positioned to benefit from the boom.

Cosmic Girl had already flown more than 8,000 flights, carrying about 2.5 million passengers, since it was first procured by Virgin Atlantic in 2001. The jet and its crew landed safely back at Mojave later that afternoon.

The 10 satellites, or CubeSats, launched into orbit were part of NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative, and nearly all were designed, built, and tested by American universities.

“A new gateway to space has just sprung open!” Virgin Orbit CEO Dan Hart said in a press release.

“Even in the face of a global pandemic, we’ve maintained a laser focus on fully demonstrating every element of this revolutionary launch system.”

“Virgin Orbit has achieved something many thought impossible,” Branson added, calling it “the culmination of many years of hard work.”

Following the successful test launch, the company will officially transition into commercial service for its next mission, it said. Customers who have already booked launches with Virgin Orbit include the US Space Force, the UK Royal Air Force, and Swarm Technologies.

The company’s first test launch in May 2020 successfully dropped a rocket from a jumbo jet and ignited it, but its launch failed after an onboard computer lost connection.

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Elon Musk’s SpaceX has launched roast turkey, cranberry sauce, and cornbread dressing to astronauts on the International Space Station

elon musk space x SpaceX Chief Engineer Elon Musk speaks in front of Crew Dragon cleanroom at SpaceX Headquarters in Hawthorne, California on October 10, 2019. (Photo by Yichuan Cao/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk.

  • A SpaceX cargo ship carrying meteorite samples, live mice, and a roast turkey dinner is set to arrive at the International Space Station (ISS) Monday afternoon.
  • This marks the first flight of SpaceX’s updated Dragon cargo ship. The new design can carry more cargo and can be used for up to five return journeys, up from three for the previous model.
  • The capsule will join another Dragon ship already docked at the station, marking the first time SpaceX has had two capsules there at the same time.
  • This mission is bringing around 6,400 pounds of supplies to the ISS, including around 4,400 pounds of research. This includes microbes and meteorite samples and 3D-engineered heart tissue.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

SpaceX launched a capsule carrying a roast turkey, live mice, and meteorite samples to the International Space Station (ISS) on Sunday morning.

It marked the 21st commercial resupply mission for Elon Musk’s aerospace giant, and the first flight of SpaceX’s updated Dragon cargo ship.

The unmanned capsule, which was launched from NASA’s Kennedy Space Centre, Florida by a Falcon 9 rocket booster, is expected to arrive on Monday at 1:30 p.m. EST, after the mission was delayed by a day due to poor weather.

This mission is bringing around 6,400 pounds of supplies to the ISS, including around 4,400 pounds of research. This includes microbes and meteorite samples to investigate how microgravity affects biomining, 3D-engineered heart tissue, a medical device that will provide quick blood test results for astronauts, and a new airlock.

It will join another Dragon capsule that docked at the ISS last month, and it will be the first time SpaceX has had two capsules there at the same time. SpaceX is aiming to always have at least one Dragon docked at the ISS.

The new Dragon model can carry roughly 20% more weight than the previous one.

The capsule is also bringing 40 mice, which will be used to research the impact that living on the ISS can have on astronauts’ bones and eyes, AP reported.

The experiments make it the “the ultimate Christmas present” for NASA astronaut Kate Rubins, Kenny Todd, NASA’s deputy space station program manager, said during a press conference on December 4

When asked whether the capsule was bringing personal presents to the ISS for the seven astronauts currently on board, Todd said: “Let’s see what happens when they open the hatch … I’m optimistic.”

Todd confirmed that the Dragon is bringing a festive meal for the astronauts, including roast turkey, cornbread dressing, cranberry sauce, shortbread biscuits, and tubes of icing.

Read more: Here’s how many users Starlink needs to break even, according to experts

The capsule will remain at the ISS for around a month before returning to Earth with experiments and old equipment.

The first stage of the Falcon 9 booster detached and landed on SpaceX’s drone ship “Of Course I Still Love You” in the Atlantic Ocean about nine minutes after launch. The ship catches falling boosters so that SpaceX can use them again.

The updated Dragon model is capable of up to five flights to and from the ISS, compared to three for the previous version, and can dock there by itself rather than using the ISS’s robot arm for anchoring.

It can also stay on the station more than twice as long as the previous version of Dragon, and can hold twice as many powered lockers, which preserve science and research samples during transport to and from Earth. 

The flight was the first of at least nine agreed under a space resupply contract between SpaceX and NASA.

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