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Blue Origin successfully launched (and landed) the 11th uncrewed test of its suborbital New Shepard launch system Thursday in Texas. This was the 5th launch for this particular rocket and capsule.

Why it matters: This most recent launch paves the way for the Jeff Bezos-founded company to launch people to space. According to Blue Origin, those crewed launches could begin as early as the end of the year. Eventually, Blue Origin hopes to fly groups of paying passengers on tourist trips to the edge of space on a regular cadence.

A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.

Bezos has often stated that Blue Origin's goal is to help bring about a future in which millions of people are living and working in space.

  • To that end, the company is also building its orbital New Glenn rocket, designed to bring larger payloads to orbit and perhaps beyond.

Details: This particular New Shepard launch carried 38 payloads to weightlessness during this flight.

  • A new Shepard flight is designed to bring paying customers up to at least 62 miles above Earth — known as the unofficial line where "space" begins — before coming down under parachutes, and landing in Texas.
  • That flight profile will allow passengers to see the Earth against the blackness of space and feel weightlessness.
  • It's not yet clear how much Blue Origin will charge for a seat aboard the capsule, though Virgin Galactic has offered seats aboard its suborbital system for about $250,000.

Background: Blue Origin is part of a broader commercial space landscape that includes SpaceX and other private companies focused on democratizing access to space. Instead of seeing space as just the realm of the wealthiest and most technologically advanced nations, these private companies want to reduce the cost of launching to space, thereby making it more accessible to all.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Distrust in political, media and business leaders sweeps the globe

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Trust in government is collapsing, especially in democracies, according to a new global survey.

Why it matters: People also don't think media or business leaders are telling them the truth, and this suspicion of multiple societal institutions is pushing people into smaller, more insular circles of trust.

Great Resignation boosts White House's tech talent hunt

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The Biden administration wants to capitalize on the Great Resignation to fill thousands of expected government tech and cybersecurity jobs.

Why it matters: The administration wants to remake how government websites deliver services and improve the nation's cybersecurity, but it will need skilled workers to make it happen.

The hot and not-so-hot job growth centers

Expand chart
Data: Indeed; Chart: Baidi Wang/Axios

Job openings have been roaring back across the country, but some metro areas are significantly hotter than others, per a new report from the jobs site Indeed.

Why it matters: Tracking growth in different cities gives us insight into how the pandemic is changing the geography of jobs.