Sunday, 19 August, 2018


Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin launches spacecraft higher than ever

Amazon creator Jeff Bezos has launched his New Shepherd rocket higher than previously Camera Icon Amazon creator Jeff Bezos has launched his New Shepherd rocket higher than
Kristine Garrett | 21 July, 2018, 16:27

Blue Origin, Jeff Bezos's private space company, has successfully performed a landing of its New Shepard rocket booster and crew capsule. After the motor fires, parachutes will hopefully deploy allowing the capsule to return safely to solid ground.

This is not the first high-energy test of New Shepard.

As it continues to progress toward human flights, Blue Origin will perform another potentially unsafe uncrewed test today of its New Shepard rocket and spacecraft.

The company hopes to begin flying humans to space soon, starting with its own employees followed by paying customers. It was flown once before on Blue Origin in April 2018. After reaching the edge of space, the capsule separated from the rocket booster and a few seconds later the escape motor fired, propelling the capsule laterally away from the main rocket. Thai company mu Space, which ordered a launch of Blue Origin's New Glenn orbital rocket in 2017, included a package with several experiments from universities and organizations in Thailand. "We are stressing the rocket to test that astronauts can get away from an anomaly at any time during flight", the company said in a statement yesterday.

The New Shepard rocket blasted off from West Texas on the company's latest test flight.

Sir Richard Branson founder of Virgin Galactic with his Spaceship Two and White Knight Two carrier aircraft

By the seventh test, the campaign featured a new next-generation booster - powered by its BE-3 engine - and the first flight of Crew Capsule 2.0, a spacecraft that featured real windows, measuring 2.4 x 3.6 feet.

Inside the capsule is a crash dummy loaded with instruments to measure the forces of the rocket launch.

Numerous payloads will be flying in the spacecraft during the test, ranging from global customers, such as Thailand's "mu Space-1" - which includes an assortment of scientific and medical items, several textile materials they plan to use on their future space suit and apparel, and other special articles for their community partners - through to a suite of payloads from Blue Origin employees as a part of their internal "Fly My Stuff" program.

This launch was the ninth for the New Shepard program, and the third for this particular combination of crew capsule and propulsion module.

Those payloads some that flew previously, like the Schmitt Space Communicator developed by Solstar, a New Mexico company seeking to demonstrate the use of wifi communications technologies in space. His direct competitor, Elon Musk, says Bezos, will be able to offer so low price for flights. The New Glenn will compete with United Launch Alliance's upcoming Vulcan rocket and with SpaceX boosters in the US launch market.

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