SpaceX’s second private flight has sent passengers, including Saudi Arabia’s first female astronaut, rocketing towards the International Space Station.
The SpaceX Falcon rocket launched from NASA’s Kennedy Space Centre on Sunday night, and the four passengers are expected to reach the space station in their capsule on Monday.
They will spend just over a week there before returning home with a splashdown just off the coast of Florida.
Saudi Arabia ‘s first astronauts in decades are stem cell researcher Rayyanah Barnawi, and Royal Saudi Air Force fighter pilot Ali al Qarni.
“This is a dream come true for everyone,” Ms Barnawi said before the flight.
“Just being able to understand that this is possible – if me and Ali can do it, then they can do it, too.”
The journey was organized by Houston-based Axiom Space and the crew is led by Peggy Whitson, a former NASA astronaut who now works for the company.
Ms Whitson holds the US record for the most accumulated time in space – 665 days and counting.