Gopichand Thotakura To Become Second Indian To Fly To Space
Life & Style

Gopichand Thotakura To Become Second Indian To Fly To Space

Gopichand Thotakura, an Indian pilot and entrepreneur, is all set to etch his name in history as the second Indian to venture into space after Rakesh Sharma in 1984. He has been chosen for Blue Origin’s NS-25 mission, marking him as the first Indian space tourist.

Hailing from Vijayawada, Thotakura holds a bachelor’s degree in aeronautical science and oversees Preserve Life Corp., a global centre for holistic wellness and applied health based near Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport in the US. Despite residing in the US, he still retains his Indian passport.

The official announcement by Blue Origin revealing the crew caught Thotakura’s family off guard when they learned of his spaceflight plans. Thotakura obtained his pilot’s licence before his driver’s licence and previously operated a medical air evacuation service in India.

After an 18-month break, Blue Origin will resume crewed flights with the NS-25 mission scheduled for April. This mission is particularly significant as it is the company’s second launch following a setback in September 2022 when a malfunctioning nozzle set off the flight termination mechanism.

The launch is scheduled to occur from Blue Origin’s launch pad in West Texas, propelling Thotakura and the other members of the crew into orbit and beyond Earth’s atmosphere.