Amazon founder Jeff Bezos blasted to the edge of space and spent a few minutes outside Earth's atmosphere Tuesday on the first crewed flight from his firm Blue Origin.
An elated Bezos could be heard calling it "the best day ever" after landing back on Earth.
The milestone launch in the modern commercial space race comes on the 52nd anniversary of Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin's moon landing in 1969, though the space-faring landscape has evolved by giant leaps since then as billionaires emerge as key players driving the new race to the cosmos.
Bezos, who holds the title of the richest man in the world per Bloomberg data, has said the spaceflight will fulfill a lifelong dream and he is also curious how it will "change" him.
Here is how the launch unfolded.
Capsule separates from booster, astronauts are experiencing 'Zero-G'
Mission Control has confirmed the capsule has separated from the booster and the astronauts are now experiencing a few minutes of weightlessness.
Audio from the capsule captures the joyful moments the crew discovered they were in microgravity.
New Shepard soars in first flight with humans aboard
The New Shepard spacecraft lifted off and cleared the tower at around 9:12 a.m. ET, carrying the Bezos brothers, Funk and Daemen to the edge of space.
The spacetrip will be 11 minutes total.
New Shepard is a ‘go’ for launch
The go poll is now complete, and New Shepard is officially a “go” for launch.
Launch has been delayed by a few minutes
With the astronauts in the capsule and the hatch closed, there was a temporary pause in launch activities for approximately five minutes while Blue Origin staff did final checks. Launch activities have since resumed, and liftoff is just 11 minutes away.