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The planned 11-minute trip from the company's Launch Site One facility is set to include the oldest person ever to go to space, the 82-year-old female aviator Wally Funk and the youngest 18-year-old Oliver Daemen and his brother Mark Bezos.

New Shepard is due to launch nine days after rival Richard Branson's space tourism company, Virgin Galactic, successfully carried out a suborbital flight from New Mexico with the British billionaire inside its rocket plane.

The mission would represent the world's first unpiloted flight to space with an all-civilian crew. Blue Origin will have none of its staff astronauts or trained personnel onboard.

Blue Origin's training programme, according to the company, includes safety briefings, a simulation of the spaceflight, a review of the rocket and its operations, and instruction on how to float around the craft's cabin after the capsule sheds Earth's gravity.

The training "will help you feel comfortable and prepared for spaceflight and your responsibilities as an astronaut," Blue Origin said in material describing the sessions.

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