Space+ Selects First Astronaut, Announces Astronaut Class Training

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PARK CITY, UT/ACCESSWIRE/June 23, 2022/ NRP Stone, Inc. (OTC PINK:NRPI) subsidiary Uplift Aerospace is privileged to officially announce that Ruben Salinas has been selected as the first commercial astronaut for Space+’s upcoming flight on the Blue Origin New Shepard rocket. Space+ also trains the “Space+ 5” astronaut class, a group of five people hired to train as commercial astronauts. The Space+5 includes Ruben Salinas as the first astronaut and group leader, Sydney Hamilton, Mike Mongo, Trent Tresch and Joan Melendez-Misner. The full Space+5 class is training to support the mission and will also fly if an additional opportunity arises. The future Space+5 astronauts were announced last night, June 22, at NFT.NYC at the 40/40 Club during a private event.

As the Chosen Astronaut and Community Ambassador, Ruben Salinas will head to space aboard an upcoming Blue Origin New Shepard rocket. Mission goals for this spaceflight include a focus on science, art, and charity. Space+ will announce more details about the charity chosen for the mission, as well as specific research objectives in the coming months. Space+ is currently engaging in public/private collaborations to integrate research and cultural projects into this first mission. Ruben will also present Space+’s Starborn space program, which aims to provide greater access and diversity in space.

Ruben “Lightyear” Salinas (Twitter: @rubenfsalinas) is a Latin American serial medtech entrepreneur, government advisor, and activist supporting underrepresented leaders in the life sciences. He pioneered and patented several medical technologies, many of which have become standards of care worldwide. In 2017, Ruben was selected as a Presidential Leadership Fellow and appointed by Governor Charlie Baker of Massachusetts to the Massachusetts Economic Development Planning Board in 2018. He is also an active duty volunteer EMT, pilot, avid motorcyclist and an autonomous diver. As the first Space+ astronaut to be selected for spaceflight, Ruben will work with Space+ as the leader of the Space+5 Astronaut class and to achieve mission goals.

Space+5’s additional commercial astronaut interns are Trent Tresch, Joan Melendez-Misner, Mike Mongo and Sydney Hamilton. Tresch is the founding director of the Center for Human Space Exploration at the University of Arizona; Melendez-Misner is an integration engineer at NASA working on space and asteroid planetary defense missions; Mongo is the author of “The Astronaut Instruction Manual” and the host of “Mike Mongo’s Astronaut Adventures” on YT. Mongo is the founder of Astronaut Job Camp at SaxaVord Spaceport and co-creator of Muttniks NFT (Twitter: @PawsInSpace); and Hamilton is head of aerospace structures at Boeing and was the first African-American to win the Space & Satellite Professionals International (Twitter: @SSPI) Promise Award.

The Space+5 is the first astronaut class building to create Uplift Aerospace’s “Starborn Space Program”. The Starborn Space Program strives to create a range of long-term missions that will engage a diverse group of community individuals to train and serve as commercial astronauts. Membership in the space program is facilitated by possession of Launch Pass NFT tokens which also serve as membership for actual access to space, including suborbital spaceflight, the International Space Station, astronaut training and other authentic space-related events.

Uplift Aerospace’s Space+ project uses artificial reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), NFTs, cryptocurrency and blockchain technology to increase access and diversity in space by delivering experiences and spatial opportunities to its members. The upcoming Starborn NFT Collection will provide access to a Web3 Metaverse for Holders that provides a technological bridge for commerce and culture between Earth and space.


Uplift Aerospace, a subsidiary of NRP Stone, Inc., is an aerospace company pioneering advanced technologies for a multiplanetary economy to revolutionize humanity’s connection to space and promote Earth conservation. Our products symbolize humanity’s limitless capacity and commitment to exploration. Uplift works to manufacture and deliver products from space to ensure a sustainable future on Earth.

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US OTC Symbol: NRPI; CUSIP: 62940J200. For the latest updates, visit and follow @upliftaerospace on Facebook, instagramand Twitter.

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