William Shatner said Thursday that breaking through Earth’s “fine” atmosphere strengthens his belief that people need to take better care of the planet.
“It’s so fragile,” said Shatner, who played Captain James T. Kirk in the original “Star Trek” series, said exclusively on NBC’s “TODAY”.
“There’s this tiny little blue skin that’s 80 kilometers wide,” he said. “And we pollute it, and it’s our way of life. And it struck me so deeply.”
“The fragility of this planet – the catastrophic event to come, and we all need to clean up this act now,” he added.
Wednesday’s trip made Shatner, 90, the oldest person to reach space.
Shatner and three other crew members – Audrey Powers, Vice President of Mission and Flight Operations at Blue Origin, and two paying customers, Glen de Vries and Chris Boshuizen – drove Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket and capsule to the edge of space. Take-off was around 10:50 a.m. ET, and the entire flight lasted about 10 minutes.
The New Shepard rocket and capsule are designed for suborbital escapades, which do not actually orbit the Earth but instead fly to the edge of space, at an altitude of over 65 miles, where passengers can live. about four minutes of weightlessness.
Shatner said he was trying to cook something smart to say when he hit earth again, but “we get up and when I was there all I thought I was smart to say is out the window “.
“We had a simulator simulating what they say you’re going to feel, and it doesn’t come close,” Shatner explained. “You can talk about weightlessness as much as you want, but the feeling of weightlessness… is indescribable.”
“You are floating, and I don’t want to do summer jumps, I don’t want to bowling – I want to look out the window,” he said.
The mission was delayed by nearly an hour while crews worked on the rocket. High winds at the Texas launch site forced Blue Origin to postpone the shipment from the originally scheduled time earlier in the week.
Bezos escorted the four passengers to the launch pad and greeted them after their spacecraft landed again. After Shatner got out of the capsule, he hugged Bezos. “What you have given me is the most profound experience I can imagine,” Shatner told Bezos in tears. “I’m overwhelmed. I had no idea.”
During the flight, Shatner tweeted a quote from the physicist Isaac Newton: “I don’t know what I can appear in the world, but it seems to me to have been only like a boy playing by the sea, entertaining me from time to time, finding a pebble more smooth or prettier than usual, while the great ocean of truth was all to be discovered before me. “