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Wednesday, May 31, 2023

    Jeff Bezos gets $3.4 billion NASA contract, Blue Origin to build astronaut lunar lander

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    Blue Origin has landed a contract to the moon and back. Jeff Bezos led space company has won a NASA contract to build a spacecraft that will shuttle astronauts to and from the moon. On Friday, NASA’s chief announced the contract. This is the second contract given under the Artemis program of the space agency.

    In 2021, NASA awarded SpaceX, a space company headed by Elon Musk, the first contract to land on the moon after its historic Apollo missions. These missions by SpaceX are expected to land on the moon during this decade.

    NASA’s chief said that the Blue Origin contract has a value of approximately $3.4 billion. John Couluris said that Bezos’ Blue Origin was privately contributing “well north” of this amount. Founder Bezos posted on social media that he was honored to partner with NASA and more.

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    Blue Origin had detailed its plan to build a Blue Moon lander. The space company will build a 52-foot, which is approximately 16 meters tall, spacecraft in partnership with Lockheed Martin, Draper, and Astrobiotic. Its goal is similar to SpaceX’s Starship lander, which is to land two astronauts on the surface of the moon.


    Jeff Bezos pumped in billions into Blue Origin. The company launched several space flights both paid and unpaid as it also took celebrity stars along for a short ride to space. Blue Origin has been competing with SpaceX from its inception and fought hard but was unsuccessful in getting the first NASA contract to a private firm under its Artemis program. Winning the second contract has been a boost for Bezos.

    Reuters reported that a NASA administrator said that a second moon lander contract for NASA’s Artemis mission would promote “commercial competition.” The space agency has been exploring private partnerships to reduce costs.

    Blue Origin’s Couluris, the lead in the development of the company’s moon lander, said that they had fought a hard battle to get a positive Friday outcome.

    He told the outlet, “We’ve been working for some time, and we’re ready to go.”

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    $2.9 billion Lunar Lander space contract for Elon Musk’s SpaceX


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