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Blue Origin - Space Coast of Florida
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Gradatim Ferociter!
(Latin for "Step by Step, Ferociously")

Blue Origin

Blue Origin, LLC designs, develops, and manufactures spaceflight systems. It develops New Shepard system, a reusable vertical takeoff and vertical landing space vehicle that include a vertical landing booster and engines. The company was founded in 2000 and is based in Kent, Washington with a launch facility in West Texas.

Working at Blue Origin

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Blue Origin's Blue Moon Lunar Lander July 20, 2021

Blue Origin safely launches four commercial astronauts to space and back

Blue Origin successfully completed New Shepard’s first human flight today with four private citizens onboard. The crew included Jeff Bezos, Mark Bezos, Wally Funk and Oliver Daemen, who all officially became astronauts when they passed the Kármán Line, the internationally recognized boundary of space.

Jacket with commemorative patch.

Upon landing, the astronauts were greeted by their families and Blue Origin’s ground operations team for a celebration in the West Texas desert.

A Historic Mission:

“Today was a monumental day for Blue Origin and human spaceflight,” said Bob Smith, CEO, Blue Origin. “I am so incredibly proud of Team Blue, their professionalism, and expertise in executing today’s flight. This was a big step forward for us and is only the beginning.”

Blue Origin expects to fly two more crewed flights this year, with many more crewed flights planned for 2022.

If you’d like to purchase a commemorative patch from today’s mission, head to the Blue Origin Shop.

You can also watch a full replay of today's flight and the post-flight press conference below.

If you are interested in securing your own window seat on a future New Shepard launch, sign up for updates on BlueOrigin.com.

-Gradatim Ferociter

Blue Origin First Human Flight Live Webcast replay Blue Origin Post-Flight Press Conference-replay


July 14, 2021

Blue Origin’s foundation, Club for the Future, selects 19 space-based charities to each receive a $1 million grant

Blue Origin’s foundation, Club for the Future

Today, Blue Origin’s foundation, Club for the Future, announced 19 non-profit charitable organizations will each be offered a $1 million grant to inspire future generations to pursue careers in STEM and help invent the future of life in space. The funds are made possible by the recent auction for the first paid seat on Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket.

Each of theorganizations selected have demonstrated a commitment to promote the future of living and working in space to inspire the next generation to explore space careers. They enhance Club for the Future’s ability to reach students, teachers, and communities, and to engage them in the excitement and adventure of innovation and space exploration.

“Our recent auction for the first seat on New Shepard resulted in a donation of $28 million to our non-profit foundation, Club for the Future,” said Bob Smith, Blue Origin CEO. “This donation is enabling Club for the Future to rapidly expand its reach by partnering with 19 organizations to develop and inspire the next generation of space professionals. Our generation will build the road to space and these efforts will ensure the next generation is ready to go even further.”

The 19 organizations include:

Blue Origin’s First Human Flight will take place on July 20. For more details about the mission and how to watch the launch live, follow @BlueOrigin on Twitter or sign up for updates at BlueOrigin.com. -Gradatim Ferociter


July 12, 2021

How to Watch Blue Origin’s First Human Flight on July 20

Blue Origin's Launch Site One

New Shepard is go for launch. On July 20, Blue Origin will fly its 16th New Shepard flight to space, and its first with astronauts on board. The launch will be broadcast live on BlueOrigin.com beginning at 6:30 am CDT / 11:30 UTC. Liftoff is currently targeted for 8:00 am CDT / 13:00 UTC.

Following the launch, a live press conference with the astronauts will be broadcast on BlueOrigin.com.

Blue Origin’s Launch Site One is in a remote location in the West Texas desert and there are no on-site public viewing areas in the vicinity of the launch site. The Texas Department of Transportation will be closing a portion of State Highway 54 adjacent to the launch site and will not allow spectators on the closed portion of the road during the launch.

Follow @BlueOrigin on Twitter and sign up on BlueOrigin.com to stay up to date on all mission details.

-Gradatim Ferociter


July 1, 2021

Wally Funk will fly to space on New Shepard’s first human flight

Wally Funk.

Fulfilling a lifelong mission to become an astronaut, Wally Funk will fly to space on New Shepard’s first human flight on July 20 as an honored guest. She will join Jeff Bezos, his brother Mark Bezos, and the auction winner on the flight. 

Wally’s journey to space began in the 1960s when she was the youngest graduate of the Woman in Space Program, a privately-funded project which tested female pilots for astronaut fitness. Later known as the “Mercury 13” – thirteen American women successfully underwent the same physiological and psychological screening tests as the astronauts selected by NASA for Project Mercury, but they never flew to space. Wally was the youngest graduate of this program.

She was the first female FAA inspector and first female NTSB air safety investigator. The 82-year-old pilot will now be part of the first crew on New Shepard, and the oldest person ever to fly to space.

Here’s the moment Jeff Bezos asked Wally Funk to join our first human flight on July 20 as his honored guest.

-Gradatim Ferociter


June 13, 2021

The very first seat on New Shepard for July 20 flight sells for $28 million

Bid for this seat
Today, Blue Origin concluded the online auction for the very first seat on New Shepard with a winning bid of $28 million. Nearly 7,600 people registered to bid from 159 countries.

The winning bidder will fly to space on New Shepard’s first human flight on July 20, and will join Blue Origin founder, Jeff Bezos, and his brother, Mark.

The winning bid amount will be donated to Blue Origin’s foundation, Club for the Future, whose mission is to inspire future generations to pursue careers in STEM and to help invent the future of life in space.

You can watch a replay of the live auction broadcast here.

The name of the auction winner will be released in the weeks following the auction’s conclusion. Then, the fourth and final crew member will be announced—stay tuned.

—Gradatim Ferociter


June 8, 2021

Watch Live: Auction for First Seat on New Shepard

Blue Origin will broadcast the live auction for the very first seat on New Shepard on Saturday, June 12th, on BlueOrigin.com. The webcast will begin at 12:45 p.m. EDT / 16:45 UTC.

After a month-long process with nearly 6,000 participants from 143 countries – the current high bid stands at $3.5 million.

Anyone interested in bidding in the live auction must register by June 10th. Registration details can be found at BlueOrigin.com. 

The winning bidder will fly to space on New Shepard’s first human flight on July 20th and will join Blue Origin founder, Jeff Bezos, and his brother Mark.

The name of the auction winner will be released in the weeks following the auction’s conclusion.

The winning bid amount will be donated to Blue Origin’s foundation, Club for the Future, whose mission is to inspire future generations to pursue careers in STEM and to help invent the future of life in space.

—Gradatim Ferociter


June 7, 2021

Blue Origin announces that Jeff Bezos and his brother Mark will join the auction winner on New Shepard’s first human flight on July 20th Auction bidding is already at $2.8 million with nearly 6,000 participants from 143 countries.

Bidding is underway now at BlueOrigin.com and concludes with a live online auction on June 12th. Anyone interested in bidding in the live auction must register by June 10th. Registration details can be found at BlueOrigin.com.

The winning bidder will fly to space on New Shepard’s first human flight on July 20th.

Here’s a link to Jeff Bezos’s Instagram post regarding the announcement today.

The winning bid amount will be donated to Blue Origin’s foundation, Club for the Future, whose mission is to inspire future generations to pursue careers in STEM and to help invent the future of life in space.

—Gradatim Ferociter


May 5, 2021

Bid for the very first seat on New Shepard

Bid for this seat

On July 20th, New Shepard will fly its first astronaut crew to space. We are offering one seat on this first flight to the winning bidder of Blue Origin’s online auction. Starting today, anyone can place an opening bid by going to BlueOrigin.com.

Here are the three phases of the auction:

The winning bid amount will be donated to Blue Origin’s foundation, Club for the Future, to inspire future generations to pursue careers in STEM and help invent the future of life in space.

On this day 60 years ago, Alan Shepard made history by becoming the first American to fly to space. In the decades since, fewer than 600 astronauts have been to space above the Kármán Line to see the borderless Earth and the thin limb of our atmosphere. They all say this experience changes them.

We named our launch vehicle after Alan Shepard to honor his historic flight. New Shepard has flown 15 successful consecutive missions to space and back above the Kármán Line through a meticulous and incremental flight program to test its multiple redundant safety systems. Now, it’s time for astronauts to climb onboard.

This seat will change how you see the world.

-Gradatim Ferociter


April 14 2021

NEW SHEPARD NS-15
Blue Origin Conducts Astronaut Rehearsal for Future Customer Flights

Blue Origin successfully completed its 15th consecutive mission to space and back today and conducted a series of simulations to rehearse astronaut movements and operations for future flights with customers on board. This mission marked a verification step prior to flying astronauts.

Blue Origin's Audrey Powers simulates astronaut ingress on New Shepard Mission NS-15.

For the first time, Blue Origin personnel standing in as astronauts entered the capsule prior to launch. These astronauts conducted a series of tests from within the capsule, including a comms check with the Capsule Communicator (CAPCOM), procedures for entering and exiting the capsule, and pre-launch preparations within the capsule. Following the crew capsule landing, the astronauts rehearsed post-flight procedures, hatch opening, and exiting the capsule.

Also onboard today was Mannequin Skywalker and more than 25,000 postcards from Club for the Future, the nonprofit founded by Blue Origin.

KEY MISSION STATS

Watch the full mission replay here. https://youtu.be/domwsgorRW0

As with previous missions, all mission crew supporting this launch exercised strict social distancing and safety measures to mitigate COVID-19 risks to personnel and surrounding communities.

If you’d like to purchase a commemorative patch from today’s mission, head to the Blue Origin Shop.

— Gradatim Ferociter


April 12. 2021

NEW SHEPARD NS-15
NS-15 Mission to Conduct Astronaut Rehearsal for Future Customer Flights

Blue Origin’s New Shepard NS-15 flight is targeting liftoff on Wednesday, April 14, from Launch Site One in West Texas. The launch window opens at 8:00 AM CDT / 13:00 UTC. Building on the incremental and consecutive mission successes for the vehicle over the course of the program’s flight history, NS-15 is a verification step for the vehicle and operations prior to flying astronauts.

During the mission, astronaut operational exercises will be conducted in preparation for human space flight. The primary operations will entail Blue Origin personnel standing in as astronauts entering into the capsule prior to launch. These astronauts will climb the launch tower, get into their seats, buckle their harnesses, and conduct a communications check from their seat with CAPCOM, the Capsule Communicator. The tower operations team will prepare the capsule cabin for launch and then briefly close the capsule hatch. The astronauts will then exit the capsule prior to launch.

Post-landing, the astronauts will get inside the capsule to rehearse hatch opening, and exiting the capsule at the landing site.

Inside the capsule during the flight will be Mannequin Skywalker, along with more than 25,000 postcards on behalf of Club for the Future, Blue Origin’s nonprofit organization. To participate in the postcards program, visit the Club for the Future website here
https://www.clubforfuture.org/missions/.

As with previous missions, all mission crew supporting this launch are exercising strict social distancing and safety measures to mitigate COVID-19 risks to personnel and surrounding communities.

Launch coverage begins at T-1 hour on BlueOrigin.com and will include live footage of the astronaut rehearsal activities. Follow @BlueOrigin on Twitter for launch updates.

—Gradatim Ferociter



January 14, 2021

Successful Demonstration of Crew Capsule Upgrades

Blue Origin successfully completed its 14th mission to space and back today for the New Shepard program.

The New Shepard crew capsule landing at Launch Site One

The New Shepard crew capsule outfitted with astronaut experience upgrades landing at Launch Site One. (January 14, 2021) Mission NS-14 featured a crew capsule outfitted with astronaut experience upgrades for upcoming flights with passengers onboard. Capsule upgrades included:

Also today during ascent, the booster rotated at 2-3 degrees per second. This is done to give future passengers a 360-degree view of space during the flight. This flight continued to prove the robustness and stability of the New Shepard system and the BE-3PM liquid hydrogen/liquid oxygen engine.

Also onboard today were more than 50,000 postcards from Blue Origin’s nonprofit Club for the Future. The Club has now flown over 100,000 postcards to space and back from students around the world. More information here.

KEY MISSION STATS

All mission crew supporting this launch exercised strict social distancing and safety measures to mitigate COVID-19 risks to personnel, customers, and surrounding communities.

If you’d like to purchase a commemorative patch from today’s mission, head to the Blue Origin Shop. Watch the full mission replay on Blue Origin’s YouTube page below.

— Gradatim Ferociter

New Shepard Mission NS-14 Webcast Replay



January 13, 2021

Astronaut Experience Upgrades

Blue Origin’s next New Shepard flight is targeting liftoff tomorrow, January 14, at 9:45 AM CST / 15:45 UTC from Launch Site One in West Texas. Mission NS-14 is the 14th flight for the New Shepard program.

For this mission, the crew capsule will be outfitted with upgrades for the astronaut experience as the program nears human space flight. The upgrades include improvements to environmental features such as acoustics and temperature regulation inside the capsule, crew display panels, and speakers with a microphone and push-to-talk button at each seat. The mission will also test a number of astronaut communication and safety alert systems. The capsule will be outfitted with six seats, including one occupied by Mannequin Skywalker.

Also inside the capsule, Blue Origin’s nonprofit Club for the Future will fly more than 50,000 postcards to space and back from students around the globe. A selection of postcards will fly in Mannequin Skywalker’s pockets. This is the third batch of Club for the Future postcards flown to space. To participate in the postcard program, go here.

All mission crew supporting this launch are exercising strict social distancing and safety measures to mitigate COVID-19 risks to personnel, customers, and surrounding communities.

Launch coverage begins at T-30 minutes on BlueOrigin.com. Follow @BlueOrigin on T

— Gradatim Ferociter


December 16, 2020

NASA Selects Blue Origin’s New Glenn Rocket for Launch Services  Catalog

Today, NASA awarded Blue Origin a NASA Launch Services II (NLS II) Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract to launch planetary, Earth observation, exploration, and scientific satellites for the agency aboard New Glenn, Blue Origin’s orbital reusable launch vehicle. The contract allows Blue Origin to compete for missions through Launch Service Task Orders issued by NASA. Project managers at NASA Centers around the country can now design spacecraft to take advantage of New Glenn’s unique seven-meter fairing and heavy-lift performance for a broad range of missions.

“We are proud to be in NASA’s launch services catalog and look forward to providing reliable launches for future NASA missions aboard New Glenn for years to come. The award builds on Blue Origin’s existing partnership with NASA and will advance science and exploration to benefit Earth,” said Jarrett Jones, senior vice president, New Glenn, Blue Origin.

New Glenn is a single-configuration, operationally reusable heavy-lift launch vehicle powered by seven BE-4 liquefied natural gas rocket engines. The vehicle’s seven-meter fairing provides more than double the usable volume of any existing launch vehicle.

New Glenn on launch pad

December 4, 2020

Blue Origin Continues BE-7 Engine Testing in Huntsville
Blue Origin BE-7 Engine Testing Further Demonstrates Capability to Land on the Moon

Blue Origin’s BE-7 engine program continues its testing at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center. This week, the program accomplished the fourth thrust chamber test of its high-efficiency engine. The hotfire testing further validates the engine that will power Blue Origin’s National Team Human Landing System (HLS) in support of NASA’s Artemis program.

BE-7 Engine Test

A photo from the fourth trust chamber test of the BE-7 engine at NASA Marshall, which lasted 10 seconds.

A photo from the fourth trust chamber test of the BE-7 engine at NASA Marshall, which lasted 10 seconds.

So far in this recent campaign, the thrust chamber was tested for a duration of 20 seconds. This brings the cumulative testing time on the BE-7 thrust chamber to 1,245 seconds. The BE-7 is a high-performance, additively manufactured liquid oxygen/liquid hydrogen lunar landing engine with 10,000 lbf of thrust – throttling down to 2,000 lbf of thrust for a precise landing on the Moon.

“This thrust chamber test measured the ability to extract energy out of the hydrogen and oxygen cooled combustor segments that power the engine’s turbopumps – the key to achieving high engine performance,” said John Vilja, senior vice president, Engines, Blue Origin. “The high specific impulse, deep throttling, and restart capabilities of the BE-7 make it the ideal engine for large lunar payload transport as well as many other in-space applications. Thanks to the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center team for their support in this testing. We value this partnership and are looking forward to more test campaigns with them.”

Within the National Team’s Human Landing System architecture, the BE-7 is used on both the Descent Element and Transfer Element.

“The BE-7, a turbomachinery-based engine using the most efficient propellants, is optimal for deep-space maneuvers and landing on the Moon,” said Brent Sherwood, vice president, Advanced Development Programs, Blue Origin. “Our engine test series is steadily maturing what’s needed to get Americans safely on the lunar surface as soon as possible. We are positioning to use the Moon’s ice resources for rocket propellant, which will make exploration sustainable and open the Moon for commerce.”

Developed privately over several years, the BE-7 is the latest high-performance engine in the Blue Origin family, building upon the demonstrated success of the BE-3 PM hydrogen/oxygen engine that powers the New Shepard vehicle.

See captured video here.

BE-7 is an additively manufactured, high-performance, dual-expander cycle engine, generating 40 kN (10,000 lbf) trust.

BE-7 Engine drawing

BE-7 is an additively manufactured, high-performance, dual-expander cycle engine, generating 40 kN (10,000 lbf) trust.

About the National Team
Blue Origin leads the HLS National Team, which includes Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Draper. The team is offering its Human Landing System to NASA’s Artemis program to sustainably return Americans to the lunar surface. As prime contractor, Blue Origin leads program management, systems engineering, safety and mission assurance, and mission engineering and operations; and develops the Descent Element. Lockheed Martin develops the Ascent Element and leads crewed flight operations and training. Northrop Grumman develops the Transfer Element that delivers the lander into low lunar orbit and final descent. Draper leads descent guidance. Click here for more information.


December 1, 2020

Blue Origin Announces Board of Advisors

Board Features Renowned Leaders in the Space Industry

Blue Origin today announced the formation of its Board of Advisors, which includes notable former government space leaders and industry executives. The Board will provide strategic counsel on the company’s mission to radically reduce the cost of access to space and the utilization of in-space resources. In doing so, the Board will further advance Blue Origin’s vision of millions of people living and working in space to benefit the Earth.

“We are so proud to have attracted this amazingly talented group of experts. This Board will help us drive our mission forward, provide us guidance on our key initiatives and serve as strategic advisors to our leadership team,” said Bob Smith, Chief Executive Officer of Blue Origin.

The Blue Origin Advisory Board members are:


October 13, 2020

Blue Origin Successfully Completes NS-13 Mission

New Shepard Successfully Completes Mission with NASA Precision Lunar Landing Technology Onboard

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New Shepard landing on the pad in West Texas on October 13, 2020, with the NASA Lunar Landing Sensor Demo onboard.

Blue Origin successfully completed the 13th New Shepard mission to space and back, and the 7th consecutive flight for this particular vehicle, a record. Catch the mission webcast replay on Blue Origin's YouTube page.

There were 12 payloads onboard including the Deorbit, Descent, and Landing Sensor Demonstration under the NASA Tipping Point partnership. The lunar landing sensor demo was the first payload to be mounted on the exterior of a New Shepard booster and tested technology designed to achieve high accuracy landing. This will enable long-term lunar exploration, as well as future Mars missions.

“Today's flight was inspiring. Using New Shepard to simulate landing on the Moon is an exciting precursor to what the Artemis program will bring to America,” said Bob Smith, CEO, Blue Origin. “Thanks to NASA for partnering with us, and congrats to the Blue Origin team on taking another step toward returning to the Moon to stay.”

KEY MISSION STATS

If you’d like to purchase a commemorative patch of the NS-13 mission, head to the Blue Origin Shop.

—Gradatim Ferociter


September 22, 2020

Blue Origin's Next Launch: NS-13

Next New Shepard Launch Will Test Key Technologies with NASA for Returning to the Moon

abc

The New Shepard booster lands after this vehicle's 6th consecutive flight on December 11, 2019.

The New Shepard booster lands after this vehicle's 6th consecutive flight on December 11, 2019. Blue Origin’s next New Shepard mission (NS-13) is currently targeting liftoff for Thursday, September 24, at 10:00 am CDT / 15:00 UTC. Current weather conditions are favorable. This will be the 13th New Shepard mission and the 7th consecutive flight for this particular vehicle (a record), demonstrating its operational reusability.

New Shepard will fly 12 commercial payloads to space and back on this mission, including the Deorbit, Descent, and Landing Sensor Demonstration with NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate under a Tipping Point partnership. This is the first payload to fly mounted on the exterior of a New Shepard booster rather than inside the capsule, opening the door to a wide range of future high-altitude sensing, sampling, and exposure payloads.

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The lunar landing sensor demo will test precision landing technologies for future missions to the Moon in support of the Artemis program. The experiment will verify how these technologies (sensors, computers, and algorithms) work together to determine a spacecraft’s location and speed as it approaches the Moon, enabling a vehicle to land autonomously on the lunar surface within 100 meters of a designated point. The technologies could allow future missions—both crewed and robotic—to target landing sites that weren’t possible during the Apollo missions, such as regions with varied terrain near craters. Achieving high accuracy landing will enable long-term lunar exploration and future Mars missions.

This is the first of two flights to test these lunar landing technologies, increasing confidence for successful missions in the Artemis program. NS-13 is part of the risk reduction process to test these types of sensors for future missions.

New Shepard booster undergoing integration and testing.

New Shepard booster undergoing integration and testing of the sensor experiment at Blue Origin's West Texas Launch Site.

New Shepard booster undergoing integration and testing of the sensor experiment at Blue Origin's West Texas Launch Site. As a part of NASA’s Artemis Human Landing System program, Blue Origin is also leading the National Team, comprised of Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Draper, to develop a Human Landing System to return Americans to the lunar surface. The technology for the Blue Origin Descent Element that takes astronauts to the lunar surface is derived from the autonomous landing capabilities developed for the New Shepard program.

New Shepard has flown more than 100 payloads to space across 10 sequential flights. Payloads on board NS-13 include experiments from Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Southwest Research Institute, NASA Flight Opportunities, Space Lab Technologies, University of Florida, Space Environment Technologies, and mu Space Corp. A selection of the manifested payloads can be found below.

Also on board will be tens of thousands of postcards from Blue Origin's nonprofit, Club for the Future, some of which will include a special NASA Artemis stamp.

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All mission crew supporting this launch are exercising strict social distancing and safety measures to mitigate COVID-19 risks to personnel, customers, and surrounding communities.

You can watch the launch live at BlueOrigin.com. The pre-show begins at T-30 minutes and will provide mission details, including a special update from NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine.

Follow @BlueOrigin on Twitter and Instagram for launch updates.

—Gradatim Ferociter

Highlights of the manifested payloads flying on NS-13

Space Lab Technologies: µG-LilyPond is an autonomous plant growth system for use in microgravity. The ultimate goal is to produce highly nutritious, aquatic plants to supplement a crew’s diet. During this flight, the µG-LilyPond payload will demonstrate thin film hydroponics (growth of plants without soil) using passive capillary flow. The payload was developed by Space Lab Technologies in collaboration with the University of Colorado at Boulder. NASA's Small Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer program provided funding for payload development and flight aboard New Shepard.

Southwest Research Institute: SwRI will fly two payloads, BORE II and LAD-2. BORE II will test a novel system for sampling regolith and anchoring to asteroids and other low-gravity destinations. The goal of this system is to advance exploration and support in-situ resource utilization (ISRU). The LAD-2 payload will demonstrate how liquid and gas interface in microgravity. Applications include cryogenic propellant storage and management for in-space propulsion systems. Both payload flights were funded by NASA’s Flight Opportunities program.

NASA: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, in collaboration with the University of Maryland, will re-fly the FBMC (Flow Boiling in Microgap Coolers) payload.This award-winning payload demonstrates an embedded cooling technology for power-dense spacecraft electronics that operate in a range of gravity environments. NASA’s Flight Opportunities program funded the payload flight test.


Blue Origin-Led National Team Delivers Lunar Lander Engineering Mockup to NASA

Today, the Blue Origin-led Human Landing System (HLS) National Team – comprised of Blue Origin, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Draper – delivered an engineering mockup of a crew lander vehicle that could take American astronauts to the Moon. The lander is set up in the Space Vehicle Mockup Facility (SVMF), NASA Johnson Space Center's (JSC) iconic Building 9.

200820-National Team's Moon Lander mockup
The National Team's engineering mockup of the crew lander vehicle at
NASA Johnson Space Center's (JSC) iconic Building 9.

The full-scale engineering mockup showcases two elements of the National Team's multi-element architecture – the Ascent Element (AE) and Descent Element (DE). Standing at more than 40 feet, it is the Blue Origin National Team's update to Apollo's Lunar Module (LM) and will be used to validate the National Team's approaches for getting crew, equipment, supplies, and samples off and on the vehicle. The team will collaborate with NASA organizations including JSC's Astronaut Office to perform engineering and crew operations tests with astronauts aiming to fly the final system within several years.

"Testing this engineering mockup for crew interaction is a step toward making this historic mission real," said Brent Sherwood, vice president of Advanced Development Programs, Blue Origin. "The learning we get from full-scale mockups can't be done any other way. Benefitting from NASA's expertise and feedback at this early stage allows us to develop a safe commercial system that meets the agency's needs."

The National Team HLS design leverages significant prior work, flight heritage, and a modular solution. Modular solutions help to enable faster progress due to the independent development and testing of each element, which permits ongoing improvements and evolution without impacting the full system. This also provides flexibility in the use of different launch vehicles and different concepts of operations.

The Descent Element is based on Blue Origin's Blue Moon cargo lander and BE-7 LOX/hydrogen engine, both in development for more than three years. The Ascent Element incorporates avionics, software, life support hardware, crew interfaces, and mission operations from Lockheed Martin's human-rated, deep-space Orion vehicle that will fly on the Artemis I and II missions. A consistent cockpit experience and training from Orion to the AE makes the end-to-end mission safer for Artemis. The Transfer Element, a propulsive stage that starts the lander on its descent trajectory from lunar orbit, is based on Northrop Grumman's Cygnus vehicle that provides logistics resupply to the International Space Station; and Draper provides descent guidance and avionics to the National Team.

"Each partner brings its own outstanding legacy to the National Team. These include developing, integrating, and operating human-rated spacecraft, launch systems and planetary landers. Together we form an excellent team to send our next astronauts to the Moon in 2024," said Kirk Shireman, vice president of Lunar Campaigns at Lockheed Martin Space. "Augmenting state of the art tools with physically being able to see, interact, and evaluate a full-up lander in person is critical. It will inform our design and requirements earlier in the program allowing us to accelerate our development and meet the 2024 lunar landing goal."

The mockup will remain at JSC through early 2021 for a series of tests and simulations. Over the coming months, the National Team will continue to build and increase mockup fidelity. NASA's Human Landing System Program is managed at Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.

Hear more from the National Team about the engineering mockup of the crew lander vehicle. (YouTube video)

About the National Team
The Blue Origin-led National Team, which is comprised of Blue Origin, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Draper, is working to offer a Human Landing System for NASA's Artemis program to return Americans to the lunar surface – this time to stay. Blue Origin, as prime contractor, leads program management, systems engineering, safety and mission assurance, and mission engineering and operations; and develops the Descent Element. Lockheed Martin develops the reusable Ascent Element vehicle and leads crewed flight operations and training. Northrop Grumman develops the Transfer Element vehicle that delivers the landing system into low lunar orbit for final descent. Draper leads descent guidance and provides flight avionics.


Blue Origin shop items for sale

Blue Origin Shop Now Open

You asked # we listened # the Blue Origin shop is now open.

Find the latest Blue Origin t-shirts, hoodies and accessories. Here are a few of the popular items the Blue team is picking up:

Stay tuned as we add more items to the store throughout the year.

May the 4th be with you!

-Gradatim Ferociter


April 30, 2020

NASA Selects Blue Origin National Team to Return Humans to the Moon

Today the Blue Origin National Team, which includes Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Draper, was selected by NASA to begin to develop the Artemis Human Landing System.

"NASA'sArtemis program will be the next major milestone in the history of human space flight, and we're honored to be a part of it," said Bob Smith, CEO, Blue Origin. "Our National Team brings unparalleled heritage, passion and innovation that will enable Americans to return to the lunar surface and inspire another generation. It's time to go back to the Moon, this time to stay."

Blue Origin moon lander illustration
The Blue Origin National Team crewed lander on the surface of the Moon.

Using existing and in development technologies provides the head start needed to meet NASA's goal of landing at the South Pole of the Moon. Lockheed Martin's Ascent Element is based on Orion; Northrop Grumman's Transfer Element is based on Cygnus; and Blue Origin's Descent Element is based on the Blue Moon lander and BE-7 engine, which has been in development for several years.

"Lockheed Martin is honored to be partnered with Blue Origin and this National Team as we begin a moment in history that the world will point to for generations," said Rick Ambrose, executive vice president, Lockheed Martin Space. "The Artemis astronauts will descend to the surface and ascend off the surface inside an advanced crewed ascent element. The best way to accomplish this safely and quickly is to leverage NASA's investment in Orion, an existing human-rated deep space spaceship, which maximizes common training and operations."

"Putting humans back on the lunar surface is an inspiring goal for our nation," said Blake Larson, corporate vice president and president of Northrop Grumman Space Systems. "We are proud to support this team and NASA with our decades of experience, comprehensive capabilities, and our proven space systems, as we return to the Moon."

"Draper's extensive portfolio and heritage in human exploration avionics is reinforced by current work on Lockheed Martin's Orion, NASA's SLS, Northrop Grumman's Cygnus and Blue Origin's engine, New Glenn and Blue Moon programs," said Seamus Tuohy, Principal Director of Space Systems, Draper. "We are prepared for this united team to return humans to the Moon, just as Draper did with Apollo."

Each National Team partner brings industry-leading solutions:

- Gradatim Ferociter


Blue Origin Opens Huntsville Engine Factory

Huntsville, AL – February 17, 2020 - Today, Blue Origin opened its rocket engine production facility in Huntsville, AL. The world-class engine manufacturing facility in The Rocket City will conduct high rate production of the BE-4 and BE-3U engines. These engines will undergo testing at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center on the historic Test Stand 4670. BE-7, our lunar landing engine, is also currently in test at NASA Marshall.

Blue Origin opens its rocket engine production facility in Huntsville, AL.

"At the core of every successful launch vehicle program are the engines that power those vehicles to space. Early on in Blue Origin's history, we made a crucial decision to invest in developing the next generation of reusable rocket engines. And now, it's an exciting time for Blue, our partners and this country –we are on the path to deliver on our promise to end the reliance on Russian made engines – and it's all happening right here, right now, in the great state of Alabama. We couldn't be prouder to call this our home for engine production," said Bob Smith, CEO of Blue Origin.

Blue will add more than 300 jobs to the local economy with an investment of over $200 million in the facility.

Here is a video of the BE-4 engine progress.


January 6, 2020

Blue Origin Opens New Headquarters in Kent, Washington

Blue Origin headquarters opening in Kent, Washington.
Pictured left to right: WA State Representative Tina Orwall, US Congressman Denny Heck, US Congressman Adam Smith, Blue Origin CEO Bob Smith, Kent Mayor Dana Ralph, US Congressman Derek Kilmer, WA State Senator Lisa Wellman, WA State Representative J.T. Wilcox, and Blue Origin COO Terry Benedict

Today, Blue Origin opened our new headquarters and R&D facility in Kent, Washington. The facility is Blue Origin's hub of operations as we continue to grow our team. Below are excerpts from remarks given by Blue Origin CEO Bob Smith at today's ribbon cutting event.

"2019 was a great year of progress and preparation for us, and 2020 is going to be even more remarkable – so we're growing quickly. We grew by a third last year and we're going to continue to grow at a rapid pace.

We named this building the O'Neill Building after Gerard O'Neill, a physicist who envisioned millions of people living and working in space for the benefit of Earth. Gerard O'Neill was one of the visionaries who thought about how we go out into space in a quick and sustainable way so that we can preserve our planet.

For those of you that are Washington State residents, what is exciting is we're going to be doing all this work from a headquarters based here in Kent. It's a remarkable statement to say that we're going to fly humans to space, we're going to build and design large engines and a large orbital rocket, and we're going to go back to the Moon – all through work centered here.

We're excited to continue to see this growth in this new facility. We broke ground on this facility in January of 2019 and it came up in just 11 months. It houses approximately 1500 people. The building sits on a 30-acre plot of land, and we're using 13 of those acres for a wildlife habitat and flood storage, as well as protecting against invasive species. This is a very sustainable building with better insulation and better energy consumption than a traditional building. And it all came together very quickly.

This couldn't have been done without our great partners. Thanks to Sprung Instant Structures, our architect Nelson, our general contractor Sierra Construction, civil engineering group Barghausen Consulting Engineers and our environmental consultants Soundview Consultants.

We want to recognize Congressman Smith, Congressman Kilmer and Congressman Heck for joining us here today, thank you for your support. We also want to give a huge thank you to the City of Kent and Mayor Dana Ralph for their tremendous support and leadership." - Bob Smith, Blue Origin CEO

- Gradatim Ferociter


December 10, 2019 — News sourced UPDATE

New Shepard Launch rescheduled for Thursday
BlueOrigin.com


December 9, 2019

New Shepard Targeting Next Launch Tomorrow at 8:30 am CST / 14:30 UCT – Watch Live

Blue Origin's next New Shepard mission (NS-12) is currently targeting liftoff tomorrow, December 10th at 8:30 am CST / 14:30 UCT. Current weather conditions aren't as favorable as we'd like, but we're continuing to keep an eye on the forecast.

As we move towards verifying New Shepard for human spaceflight we are continuing to mature the safety and reliability of the vehicle.

It's the 6th flight for this particular New Shepard vehicle, marking the first time a Blue Origin booster has made this many consecutive flights (the previous booster flew five times consecutively) - all with minimal refurbishment between flights. This particular rocket has been an operational payload vehicle for several flights, meaning there are no more updates to the system.

This will also be the 9th commercial payload mission for New Shepard, and we are proud to be flying our 100th customer on board.

Also on the vehicle are thousands of postcards from students around the world for our nonprofit Club for the Future. The Club's mission is to inspire future generations to pursue careers in STEM and help visualize the future of life in space.

You can watch the launch live at BlueOrigin.com - the pre-show begins T-30 where Blue will provide more mission details and updates.

To follow the action, we'll be posting live updates on Instagram and Twitter.

Blue Origin Twitter and Instagram
Club for Future Twitter and Instagram

New Shepard Mission NS-12 Notable Payloads Manifested:

OK Go
Earlier this year we partnered with rock band OK Go on a contest called Art in Space, giving high school and middle school students a chance to send art experiments into space on our New Shepard vehicle. We are sending the two winning art projects on NS-12.

Columbia University
One of our educational payloads from Columbia University, designed and built by undergraduate students and advised by Dr. Michael Massimino (an astronaut), will study the acute impacts of microgravity environments on cell biology. This is crucial for humans living and working in space.

OSCAR
OSCAR, which was led by principal investigator Dr. Annie Meier, is a recycling technology payload from NASA's Kennedy Space Center. It is designed to create a mixture of gasses that could be used for propulsion or life support from common waste on a deep space human exploration mission. This is Blue's first full-stack payload, meaning there will be more room to do complex studies in flight.

-Gradatim Ferociter


October 22, 2019

Blue Origin Announces National Team for NASA's Human Landing System Artemis

Today, Blue Origin is proud to announce a national team to offer a Human Landing System for NASA's Artemis program to return Americans to the lunar surface by 2024.

Blue Origin has signed teaming agreements with Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and Draper. These partners have decades of experience supporting NASA with human space flight systems, launch vehicles, orbital logistics, deep-space missions, interplanetary navigation and planetary landings.

Our combined experience is uniquely positioned to meet NASA's needs for the Artemis program. Each partner will bring their industry leading solutions to the following roles:

"National challenges call for a national response. We are humbled and inspired to lead this deeply committed team that will land NASA astronauts on the Moon," said Bob Smith, CEO, Blue Origin. "Combining our partners' heritage with our advance work on the Blue Moon lunar lander and its BE-7 engine, our team is looking forward to working with NASA in support of the Artemis program."

"Lockheed Martin has been honored to help NASA explore space for more than 50 years, providing deep space robotic missions, planetary landers, space shuttle heritage and the Orion exploration spacecraft," said Rick Ambrose, executive vice president, Lockheed Martin Space. "We value Blue Origin's thoughtful approach to developing human-rated flight systems, and are thrilled to be part of a national team with this mix of innovation and experience. We look forward to safely and sustainably returning our nation to the surface of the Moon by 2024."

"Northrop Grumman's commitment to put Americans back on the moon dates back over 50 years ago with the delivery of the first lunar lander for the historic Apollo Program," said Blake Larson, corporate vice president and president of Innovation Systems, Northrop Grumman. "Along with our ongoing work on the Space Launch System boosters, astronaut escape system, and the Gateway habitat, we are proud to be a part of the Blue Origin national team to support NASA's Artemis program and the ambitious goal to return to the moon by 2024."

"When the nation needs precision guidance, it calls on Draper," said Kaigham J. Gabriel, President and CEO, Draper. "We guided Apollo to the moon and back nearly 50 years ago. We're ready to do it again with the Blue Origin team for Artemis."

It's time to go back to the Moon, this time to stay.

-Gradatim Ferociter


May 10, 2019

Going to Space to Benefit Earth (Full Event Replay)

On May 9, 2019, our founder discussed his vision to go to space to benefit Earth.

Watch the full replay of this event here.

In addition, he also announced the Blue Moon lunar lander, which is capable of taking people and payloads to the lunar surface. Below you'll find more information about these announcements.

Blue Origin's Blue Moon lunar lander.

Blue Moon lunar lander: Blue Origin announced Blue Moon, its large lunar lander capable of delivering multiple metric tons of payload to the lunar surface based on configuration and mission. The cargo variant revealed today can carry 3.6 metric tons to the surface. We have also designed a variant of the lander that can stretch to be capable of carrying a 6.5-metric-ton, human-rated ascent stage. Blue also announced it can meet the current Administration's goal of putting Americans on the Moon by 2024 with the Blue Moon lunar lander.

BE-7 engine: The Blue Moon lunar lander will be powered by the BE-7 engine, a new addition to Blue Origin's family of engines. The BE-7's 40 kN (10,000 lbf) thrust is designed for large lunar payload transport. The engine's propellants are a highly-efficient combination of liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen. The BE-7 will have its first hotfire this summer. The engine will be available for sale to other companies for use in in-space and lander applications.

Club For the Future: A non-profit founded by Blue Origin dedicated to inspiring and engaging the next generation of dreamers and space entrepreneurs as we journey to preserve Earth and unlock the potential of living and working in space. The Club will bring together K-12 students, educators and leaders for campaigns and initiatives utilizing Blue Origin's unique access to space. The Club's first activity will be to send a postcard to space and back on a future New Shepard missionãthe first ever space mail. Learn more on the website (www.clubforfuture.org). Follow @ClubforFuture on Twitter and Instagram.

Gradatim Ferociter



May 2, 2019

New Shepard Takes 38 Payloads to Space on NS-11

New Shepard had a great mission on May 2, 2019. This particular rocket has flown to space and back 5 times. The mission flew 38 payloads for a variety of schools, universities, government agencies and private companies.

New Shepard booster landing.
The New Shepard booster lands during Mission NS-11 on May 2, 2019.

NS-11 fligtht recap statistics.
Flight statistics from today's NS-11 flight.

Gradatim Ferociter -- Team Blue


May 1, 2019

New Shepard Targeting Launch Tomorrow at 8:30 am CDT – Watch Live

We're targeting New Shepard's next launch on May 2, 2019, with liftoff scheduled for 8:30 am CDT / 13:30 UTC. The mission, named NS-11, will take 38 payloads above the K·rm·n line into space.

Blue Origin's New Shepard booster.
New Shepard booster prior to touchdown on Mission 9, July 18, 2018.

Some of the payloads flying with us include:

Orbital Medicine – Orbital Medicine, a small business focused on aerospace medicine, comes to us through funding from NASA's Flight Opportunities Program. On NS-11, Marsh Cuttino, MD, will demonstrate an experimental medical technology designed to treat a collapsed lung in zero gravity (which is a gravity-dependent procedure). Thanks to a previous flight on New Shepard, Dr. Cuttino has been able to evolve the technology and this flight will prove a near-final version that could one day save lives in space.

New Century Technology High School – A group of students from Huntsville, AL have designed an experiment to test temperature fluctuations in microgravity. The students were excited to get hands-on experience for a project they'll be able to launch to space and worked with NASA engineers to perfect their design. By lowering launch costs, more and more students will have the chance to design, build and send technology to space.

MIT Media Lab Space Exploration Initiative – The Space Exploration Initiative is built on the spirit of the MIT Media Lab, uniting artists, engineers, scientists, and designers. As the first MIT flight with New Shepard, the Space Exploration Initiative is flying several scientific payloads, as well as two projects that use zero gravity as a medium for works of art. Telepresent Drawings in Space uses graphite to create a drawing that could only have been made in space. Living Distance: A Spider-Inspired Robotic Dance in Weightlessness demonstrates a crystalline robotic device that navigates zero gravity, similar to a performance. Other payloads include TESSERAE: Self Assembling Space Architecture, Floral Cosmonauts: Crystal Electro-Nucleation and Queen Bee Maiden Flight.

You can watch the launch live with our webcast on www.blueorigin.com starting 20 minutes before liftoff. Follow @BlueOrigin on Twitter for launch updates!

Gradatim Ferociter -- Team Blue


January 31, 2019

Blue Origin to Launch Telesat's Advanced Global LEO Satellite Constellation

We've signed a multi-launch agreement with Telesat
Telesat has selected our powerful New Glenn rocket to launch Telesat's innovative LEO satellite constellation into space.
We're happy to announce we've signed a multi-launch agreement with Telesat to play a key role in the deployment of their LEO constellation, which will provide fiber-like broadband services anywhere on Earth.

Here's a quote from our CEO, Bob Smith:

"Blue Origin is honored that Telesat has selected our powerful New Glenn rocket to launch Telesat's innovative LEO satellite constellation into space. We are excited to be partnering with this industry leader on their disruptive satellite network architecture. New Glenn's 7-meter fairing, with its huge mass and volume capabilities, is a perfect match for Telesat's constellation plans while reducing launch costs per satellite."

New Glenn's 7-meter fairing has twice the payload volume as any other launch provider in the market, making it an ideal solution for Telesat to lower their satellite deployment costs. The two companies will collaborate on a range of technical activities to assure cost and performance objectives are achieved throughout the multi-launch program.

This partnership, along with New Glenn's selection by the U.S. Air Force for a launch services agreement, gives New Glenn the opportunity to demonstrate its heavy-lift and volume capabilities to civil, commercial and national security customers when it begins launching in 2021.

For more information, see Telesat's press release and check out our tweet.

Gradatim Ferociter -- Team Blue


January 25, 2019

Blue Origin Breaks Ground on Huntsville Engine Production Facility

Today we broke ground on the construction of a world-class rocket engine production facility in Huntsville, Alabama, extending the city's rich legacy in liquid rocket engines.

Groundbreaking for engine factory in Huntsville, AL.
Pictured left to right: Greg Canfield, Alabama Secretary of Commerce; Kim Lewis, Huntsville/Madison County Chamber 2019 Board Chair; Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle; Alabama Governor Kay Ivey; United Launch Alliance CEO Tory Bruno; Blue Origin CEO Bob Smith; Madison County Commission Chairman Dale Strong; U.S. Senator Doug Jones; U.S. Congressman Mo Brooks; Clayco CEO Bob Clark.

Here are excerpts from today's groundbreaking ceremony given by Blue Origin CEO Bob Smith:

It's a great day here in Rocket City. Thanks to the votes of confidence from United Launch Alliance, from the Air Force for national security missions, and from Huntsville and the state of Alabama, we are breaking ground on a facility to produce our world-class engines and power the next generation of spaceflight.

Last September, United Launch Alliance (ULA) selected our BE-4 engine to power the Vulcan rocket. Then in October, both our New Glenn launch vehicle and Vulcan were selected by the United States Air Force in its Launch Services Agreement contract. This means two out of the three major launch systems flying national security space missions will be powered by engines produced in our Huntsville facility.

New Glenn will be a competitive launch vehicle that can serve all the needs of the civil, commercial and national security space markets for years to come.

We're excited to provide safe, reliable access to space and – in the case of United Launch Alliance – end the dependency our nation has on using Russian RD-180 engines for critical national security launches.

The BE-4 is an incredibly sophisticated and powerful engine. It will be a true marvel of engineering when we complete its development later this year and it is currently rocking our test stands out in West Texas. Each ULA Vulcan first stage will have two of these BE-4 engines and they will be integrated into the vehicle just across the river at their Decatur facility. Seven BE-4s, with a combined thrust of nearly 4 million pounds, will also power the fully reusable first stage of Blue Origin's New Glenn launch system.

We'll also be building our BE-3U engine in Huntsville. It's an upper-stage variant of our BE-3 liquid oxygen-liquid hydrogen engine that we're already flying on New Shepard. It's the first completely new liquid hydrogen engine developed for production in the United States in more than a decade and New Shepard is giving us hours of experience operating it.

This project has been in the works for several years and we're thankful to everyone who made it happen.

Thanks to Governor Kay Ivey, Senator Richard Shelby, Secretary of Commerce Greg Canfield, Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle, Commission Chairman Dale Strong, and the entire Huntsville Madison County Chamber of Commerce for their commitment to bringing us to northern Alabama and making this day possible.

We'd also like to recognize Senator Doug Jones, Representative Mo Brooks, and Marshall Space Flight Center Director Jody Singer for their continued support.

This engine production facility demonstrates our commitment to the state of Alabama. It also demonstrates our confidence that the highly-skilled workforce, deep aerospace history and strong business climate in Huntsville will play a critical role in advancing our vision of millions of people living and working in space.

Additionally, we are in final negotiations with Marshall Space Flight Center to acceptance test both BE-4 and BE-3U engines at Test Stand 4670, the historic site for testing the Saturn V first stage and the Space Shuttle main engines. Through this agreement, we'll provide for the refurbishment, restoration and modernization of this piece of American history.

When we open our doors in Huntsville in March 2020, we will add more than 300 jobs to the local economy, invest over $200 million in the facility and ensure a new generation of engines will rumble to life and send us into the heavens.

Click here to read the press release from the Huntsville/Madison County Chamber.


ULA President and CEO Tory Bruno's Statement about Blue Origin Ground Breaking in Alabama

Huntsville, Ala., Jan. 25, 2019 – "United Launch Alliance welcomes Blue Origin to the great state of Alabama and to join the other aerospace companies that have made Rocket City our home for decades. A little more than three months ago, ULA chose Blue Origin's BE-4 engine to power our Vulcan Centaur rocket, which we are manufacturing at our facility in Decatur, Alabama. I am pleased that Blue Origin has chosen to join the more than 200 ULA suppliers doing business here in Alabama. The state of Alabama knows how to attract and help business grow and I could not be more thrilled to be part of the resurgence of rocket and engine development in the Tennessee Valley.

"ULA's Atlas and Delta rockets are the most successful space launch vehicles in history, having launched more than 130 missions with 100 percent mission success. Today, we celebrate the culmination of those decades of knowhow and invention into the transition to our new Vulcan Centaur rocket. Vulcan Centaur is one system for all missions. It will embody our expertise and reliability while providing advanced technology to our warfighters, being superior in both cost and capability. Vulcan Centaur is the only launch vehicle with a design that is centered on our customers' national security space mission. Vulcan Centaur will provide for our nation's needs today and into the future. We look forward to our partnership with Blue Origin, building the advanced BE-4 engine to power our next-generation rocket, right here in Alabama!"


January 23, 2019

New Shepard Successfully Flies 8 NASA Research & Technology Payloads to Space

Blue Origin reusable rocket: landed

Blue Origin demonstrated the versatility of the New Shepard system by taking 8 NASA-sponsored research and technology payloads into space today.

This flight was dedicated to NASA's Flight Opportunities program, an essential program for researchers providing access to microgravity for technology development. Blue supports NASA's Flight Opportunities program and its role in perfecting technology for a future human presence in space.

New Shepard's reusability is lowering launch costs and creating routine access to space. Lowering the cost of microgravity research increases the opportunities for universities, government researchers and entrepreneurs to test payloads and technologies in space.

The launch was the 10th successful mission for the New Shepard program and the 4th flight for this vehicle. It was another great practice run towards regular payload flights with our growing fleet of launch vehicles.

Click here to see a post from our founder about the mission.

Blue Origin capsule

Flying New Shepard more frequently is critically important to the future of Blue Origin. It moves us toward our ultimate goal to lower the cost of access to space and move heavy industry off Earth so we can use space to benefit Earth.

Additionally, the continued success and proven stability of this configuration on a subscale confirms we are using the methods, operations and technology needed for our larger scale programs.

In an upcoming mission, New Shepard will take payloads to space from around the world.

Our crowd in front of our Blue Origin Rocket


December 17, 2018

New Shepard to Fly 9 NASA-sponsored Payloads to Space on NS-10

Blue Origin's next New Shepard mission (NS-10) is currently targeting liftoff tomorrow at 8:30 am CST / 14:30 UTC. This will be the 10th New Shepard mission and is dedicated to bringing nine NASA-sponsored research and technology payloads into space through NASA's Flight Opportunities program.

NASA's Flight Opportunities program is an essential program for researchers providing access to microgravity for technology development. Blue supports NASA's Flight Opportunities program and its role in perfecting technology for a future human presence in space.

Blue Origin's launch pad.
New Shepard on the launch pad the morning of Mission 9, July 18, 2018.

The payloads flying with us on NS-10 include:

Carthage College Space Sciences Program: The Modal Propellant Gauging experiment led by Dr. Kevin Crosby is a joint effort with the NASA Kennedy Space Center Cryogenics Laboratory. It demonstrates a way to measure fuel levels in microgravity by using sound waves.

Controlled Dynamics Inc.: The Vibration Isolation Platform (VIP) aims to separate payloads from the normally occurring vibrations experienced during spaceflight. The payload led by Dr. Scott Green allows researchers to have a clear understanding of microgravity's effects on their research results.

Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab: On its second flight with Blue, the EM Field experiment will observe and collect data on the naturally occurring electromagnetic fields both inside and outside New Shepard during the launch. Principal Investigator Dr. Todd Smith will use success of this experiment to determine how global measurements of the Earth's electromagnetic field can be conducted in the future.

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center: Cooling tightly-packed electronics onboard a spacecraft can be challenging, and many solutions have not been able to undergo robust testing. Principal Investigator Franklin Robinson will test one of these solutions in his Flow Boiling in Microgap Coolers experiment.

NASA Johnson Space Center: On its third flight on New Shepard, the Suborbital Flight Experiment Monitor-2 (SFEM-2) led by Dr. Katy Hurlbert will analyze various aspects of the flight environment during New Shepard's mission profile, measuring cabin pressure, temperature, CO2, acoustic conditions, acceleration and more. The data collected will help future researchers on New Shepard design the most effective experiments for the vehicle.

Purdue University: Dr. Steven Collicott's payload looks at Zero-Gravity Green Propellant Management Technology, which aims to help advance the use of a safer and more environmentally friendly rocket propellant by better understanding the fuel's behavior in microgravity.

University of Central Florida: Two teams led by Dr. Josh Colwell and Dr. Addie Dove both have planetary science payloads on NS-10. The Collisions Into Dust Experiment (COLLIDE) aims to understand how dust particles react after surface contact during exploration missions to places such as the Moon, Mars and asteroids. The Collection of Regolith Experiment (CORE) addresses the unique challenge of collecting and analyzing material samples in microgravity.

University of Florida: Dr. Rob Ferl and Dr. Anna-Lisa Paul are adapting technology designed for the ISS to suborbital uses with their experiment, Validating Telemetric Imaging Hardware for Crew-Assisted and Crew-Autonomous Biological Imaging in Suborbital Applications. By recalibrating the way data is collected, the experiment will enable more biological research on suborbital missions.

Make sure to follow us on Twitter for launch day updates and join us at BlueOrigin.com to watch the launch live!

Gradatim Ferociter -- Team Blue


October 10, 2018

Air Force Selects Blue Origin for Launch Services Agreement

U.S. Air Force selects New Glenn for national security space missions.

Blue Origin is honored to enter into a Launch Services Agreement (LSA) partnership with the Air Force to leverage our commercial, heavy-lift New Glenn launch vehicle for national security space (NSS) missions. New Glenn is a single-configuration, operationally reusable launch vehicle powered by seven BE-4 liquefied natural gas rocket engines and offers significant performance margin for all NSS missions.

The LSA partnership enables rapid buildout of NSS-unique New Glenn infrastructure such as vertical payload integration capability and a launch site at Vandenberg Air Force Base as well as completion of NSS certification activities.

Blue Origin is proud to serve the NSS community and is committed to providing safe, reliable access to space for the nation.

For more information on this announcement, check out the Air Force's press release, Blue's tweet and Jeff's tweet.

Gradatim Ferociter!


October 3, 2018

"Let's go to the Moon" is key focus at IAC 2018

Blue Origin's Blue Moon Lunar Lander
Blue Origin's Blue Moon Lunar Lander

Moving heavy industry from Earth into space is at the core of Blue Origin's mission. The future will be better for our children – and our children's children – if we use space to benefit life on Earth and enable millions of people to live and work in space.

The next logical step in this path is a return to the Moon. To do this we need reusable access to the lunar surface and its resources. We're in the conceptual design phase of a large lunar lander that will provide that access called Blue Moon.

We are not alone in our drive to return to the Moon, and there have been some exciting updates this week at the 69th Annual International Astronautical Congress in Bremen, Germany.

Blue has joined leading space companies and agencies to support the creation of The Moon Race, a non-profit working to launch a competition for teams looking for a ride to the lunar surface. The goal is consistent with our aim to land large payloads on the Moon that can access and utilize the resources found there. We're supporting this initiative, along with ESA, Airbus, and other entities seeking to foster the next generation of lunar exploration – with Blue Moon and New Glenn.

We're also excited to announce a collaboration with OHB SE and MT Aerospace on a future Blue Moon mission.

Check out our tweets about The Moon Race and OHB announcements for more information.

Gradatim Ferociter!


September 27, 2018

Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine Selected by ULA to Power Vulcan

We have some exciting news to share with you! Blue Origin's BE-4 engine has been selected by United Launch Alliance to power the Vulcan rocket. See the statement below from our CEO, Bob Smith, regarding today's announcement.

"Today is a great day for the Blue Origin team. We are very honored that United Launch Alliance has selected Blue Origin's LOX/LNG BE-4 as the engine that will power the first stage of their Vulcan rocket.

United Launch Alliance is the premier launch service provider for national security missions, and we're thrilled to be part of their team and that mission.

We can't thank Tory Bruno and the entire United Launch Alliance team enough for entrusting our engine to power Vulcan. The Blue team is looking forward to developing our production facility for our BE-4 engine in Huntsville over the next year."

Bob Smith, Blue Origin, CEO

If you want to learn more about today's announcement, here is Blue Origin's tweet, ULA's press release, and footage of the BE-4.

Thanks and Gradatim Ferociter!


United Launch Alliance Press Release -- September 27, 2018

United Launch Alliance Building Rocket of the Future with Industry-Leading Strategic Partnerships

ULA Selects Blue Origin Advanced Booster Engine for Vulcan Centaur Rocket System

Centennial, Colo., Sept. 27, 2018 ‒ United Launch Alliance's (ULA) next-generation rocket - the Vulcan Centaur - is making strong progress in development and is on track for its initial flight in mid-2020. The Vulcan Centaur rocket design leverages the proven success of the Delta IV and Atlas V launch vehicles while introducing advanced technologies and innovative features.

"Vulcan Centaur will revolutionize spaceflight and provide affordable, reliable access to space for our current and future customers," said Tory Bruno, ULA's president and CEO. "We are well on our way to the introduction of Vulcan Centaur ‒ the future of U.S. rocket manufacturing. With state-of-the-art engineering and manufacturing techniques, this rocket is designed specifically for low recurring cost." The new rocket design is nearing completion, and the booster preliminary design and critical design reviews have been completed. Vulcan Centaur will have a maximum liftoff thrust of 3.8 million pounds and carry 56,000 pounds to low Earth orbit, 33,000 pounds to a geo-transfer orbit and 16,000 pounds to geostationary orbit with greater capability than any currently available single-core launch vehicle.

"Our new rocket will be superior in reliability, cost and capability ‒ one system for all missions," said Bruno. "We have been working closely with the U.S. Air Force, and our certification plan is in place."

Following completion of a competitive procurement, ULA has selected Blue Origin's BE-4 engine for Vulcan Centaur's booster stage. The liquefied natural gas (LNG) fueled booster will be powered by a pair of BE-4 engines, each producing 550,000 pounds of sea level thrust. As previously announced, ULA has selected Aerojet Rocketdyne's RL10 engine for the Centaur upper stage, Northrop Grumman solid rocket boosters, L-3 Avionics Systems avionics, and RUAG's payload fairings and composite structures for the new Vulcan Centaur rocket system.

"We are pleased to enter into this partnership with Blue Origin and look forward to a successful first flight of our next-generation launch vehicle," said Bruno.

"We are very glad to have our BE-4 engine selected by United Launch Alliance. United Launch Alliance is the premier launch service provider for national security missions, and we're thrilled to be part of their team and that mission," said Blue Origin CEO Bob Smith. "We can't thank Tory Bruno and the entire United Launch Alliance team enough for entrusting our engine to powering the Vulcan rocket's first stage."

Vulcan Centaur will bolster U.S. manufacturing by adding to the more than 22,000 direct and indirect American jobs in 46 states supported by ULA programs.

"ULA has chosen the best systems available to create the Vulcan Centaur," said Bruno. "These engines and components will ensure ULA continues to lead the way in space exploration, maintain our record of success and remain America's launch vehicle for our nation's most vital missions."

Vulcan Centaur is ULA's next-generation, American rocket system. As a result of these agreements, the Vulcan Centaur will surpass current rocket capabilities and launch services at significantly lower costs, while still meeting the requirements of ULA's cooperative research and development agreement with the U.S. Air Force to certify the Vulcan Centaur for national security space missions.

"Strong partners are critical to the cutting-edge innovation that is leading us into the next generation in space and ensuring mission success," said Bruno. "Partnerships with Blue Origin, Aerojet Rocketdyne, Northrop Grumman, L-3 Avionics Systems and RUAG will allow the Vulcan Centaur to transform the future of space launch for the government and commercial markets, making launch more affordable, accessible and commercially available."

With more than a century of combined heritage, ULA is the world's most experienced and reliable launch service provider. ULA has successfully delivered 130 satellites to orbit that provide Earth observation capabilities, enable global communications, unlock the mysteries of our solar system, and support life-saving technology.

For more information on ULA, visit the ULA website at www.ulalaunch.com, or call the ULA Launch Hotline at 1-877-ULA-4321 (852-4321). Join the conversation at www.facebook.com/ulalaunch, twitter.com/ulalaunch and instagram.com/ulalaunch.


United Launch Alliance Press Release -- September 27, 2018

Blue Origin's BE-4 Engine Selected by ULA to Power Vulcan

Blue Origin's BE-4 engine test
Blue Origin's BE-4 engine test
Hi There,

Blue Origin logo We have some exciting news to share with you! Blue Origin's BE-4 engine has been selected by United Launch Alliance to power the Vulcan rocket. See the statement below from our CEO, Bob Smith, regarding today's announcement.

"Today is a great day for the Blue Origin team. We are very honored that United Launch Alliance has selected Blue Origin's LOX/LNG BE-4 as the engine that will power the first stage of their Vulcan rocket.

United Launch Alliance is the premier launch service provider for national security missions, and we're thrilled to be part of their team and that mission.

We can't thank Tory Bruno and the entire United Launch Alliance team enough for entrusting our engine to power Vulcan. The Blue team is looking forward to developing our production facility for our BE-4 engine in Huntsville over the next year."

Bob Smith
Blue Origin, CEO
If you want to learn more about today's announcement, here is Blue Origin's tweet, ULA's press release, and footage of the BE-4.

Thanks and Gradatim Ferociter! (Latin for "Step by Step, Ferociously" - ed.)

If you were forwarded this e-mail, you can receive it directly by signing up for updates at blueorigin.com/interested


United Launch Alliance Press Release

United Launch Alliance Building Rocket of the Future with Industry-Leading Strategic Partnerships

ULA Selects Blue Origin Advanced Booster Engine for Vulcan Centaur Rocket System

Centennial, Colo., Sept. 27, 2018 – United Launch Alliance's (ULA) next-generation rocket - the Vulcan Centaur - is making strong progress in development and is on track for its initial flight in mid-2020. The Vulcan Centaur rocket design leverages the proven success of the Delta IV and Atlas V launch vehicles while introducing advanced technologies and innovative features.

"Vulcan Centaur will revolutionize spaceflight and provide affordable, reliable access to space for our current and future customers," said Tory Bruno, ULA's president and CEO. "We are well on our way to the introduction of Vulcan Centaur – the future of U.S. rocket manufacturing. With state-of-the-art engineering and manufacturing techniques, this rocket is designed specifically for low recurring cost."

The new rocket design is nearing completion, and the booster preliminary design and critical design reviews have been completed. Vulcan Centaur will have a maximum liftoff thrust of 3.8 million pounds and carry 56,000 pounds to low Earth orbit, 33,000 pounds to a geo-transfer orbit and 16,000 pounds to geostationary orbit with greater capability than any currently available single-core launch vehicle.

"Our new rocket will be superior in reliability, cost and capability – one system for all missions," said Bruno. "We have been working closely with the U.S. Air Force, and our certification plan is in place."

Following completion of a competitive procurement, ULA has selected Blue Origin's BE-4 engine for Vulcan Centaur's booster stage. The liquefied natural gas (LNG) fueled booster will be powered by a pair of BE-4 engines, each producing 550,000 pounds of sea level thrust. As previously announced, ULA has selected Aerojet Rocketdyne's RL10 engine for the Centaur upper stage, Northrop Grumman solid rocket boosters, L?3 Avionics Systems avionics, and RUAG's payload fairings and composite structures for the new Vulcan Centaur rocket system.

"We are pleased to enter into this partnership with Blue Origin and look forward to a successful first flight of our next-generation launch vehicle," said Bruno.

"We are very glad to have our BE-4 engine selected by United Launch Alliance. United Launch Alliance is the premier launch service provider for national security missions, and we're thrilled to be part of their team and that mission," said Blue Origin CEO Bob Smith. "We can't thank Tory Bruno and the entire United Launch Alliance team enough for entrusting our engine to powering the Vulcan rocket's first stage."

Vulcan Centaur will bolster U.S. manufacturing by adding to the more than 22,000 direct and indirect American jobs in 46 states supported by ULA programs.

"ULA has chosen the best systems available to create the Vulcan Centaur," said Bruno. "These engines and components will ensure ULA continues to lead the way in space exploration, maintain our record of success and remain America's launch vehicle for our nation's most vital missions."

Vulcan Centaur is ULA's next-generation, American rocket system. As a result of these agreements, the Vulcan Centaur will surpass current rocket capabilities and launch services at significantly lower costs, while still meeting the requirements of ULA's cooperative research and development agreement with the U.S. Air Force to certify the Vulcan Centaur for national security space missions.

"Strong partners are critical to the cutting-edge innovation that is leading us into the next generation in space and ensuring mission success," said Bruno. "Partnerships with Blue Origin, Aerojet Rocketdyne, Northrop Grumman, L-3 Avionics Systems and RUAG will allow the Vulcan Centaur to transform the future of space launch for the government and commercial markets, making launch more affordable, accessible and commercially available."

With more than a century of combined heritage, ULA is the world's most experienced and reliable launch service provider. ULA has successfully delivered 130 satellites to orbit that provide Earth observation capabilities, enable global communications, unlock the mysteries of our solar system, and support life-saving technology.

For more information on ULA, visit the ULA website at www.ulalaunch.com, or call the ULA Launch Hotline at 1-877-ULA-4321 (852-4321). Join the conversation at www.facebook.com/ulalaunch, twitter.com/ulalaunch and instagram.com/ulalaunch.




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10/12/18