Jeff Bezos announced them winning the contract to build & supply engines for the Vulcan Rocket
Amazon.com’s CEO Jeff Bezos has won the contract to build engines for United Launch Alliance’s massive Vulcan rocket, the companies announced on Thursday.
Blue Origin was already the first most capable candidate for months, and now, the win is an important milestone for the Seattle-Area aerospace company. This deal ensures it to become a player in the market for various US military satellite launch contracts.
— CBS News (@CBSNews) September 28, 2018
Selecting Blue Origin’s all-American BE-4 engine for the next-gen heavy-lift Vulcan launch vehicle is part of ULA’s path to ending US’s dependence on Russia’s RD-180 engine for national security missions. That engine as of now provides the main source of power for ULA’s legacy workhorse, Atlas V, which the Vulcan will replace over time.
A Big Plan for a long time Already
ULA, a joint venture of aerospace supports Boeing Co and Lockheed Martin Corp, picked Blue Origin’s BE-4 engine to power Vulcan’s core booster over the AR1 engine put up by Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings.
Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin lands major rocket engine deal with Boeing-Lockheed venture, source says. https://t.co/9afzOFl7Ra
— CNBC (@CNBC) September 27, 2018
“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,” Blue Origin’s CEO, Bob Smith, said in a statement.
Seems a non-disclosure agreement!
There was no disclosure over the agreement and in regard to the fact that the engine compromises a large cost and part of the rocket.
Aerojet Rocketdyne spokesman Steve Warren said the company was “still excited to be on team Vulcan.” Aerojet’s RL10 engine will provide power to the Vulcan rocket’s upper stage.
ULA while announcing the winner of the contract for the Vulcan Rocket’s engine, stated that the initial take-off was planned by the mid-way of 2020. Due, to certain reasons the company expects the deadline to extend.
Bezos has his own plans for the future
— Thomas Burghardt (@TGMetsFan98) September 25, 2018
Bezos is channeling $1 billion of his own income’s part annually into Blue Origin as it heads to fly its own heavy-lift launch vehicle, named New Glenn, in 2020. New Glenn will also be powered by Blue Origin’s BE-4 engine and eventually stand against with ULA’s Vulcan, raising questions about the clarity of Bezos’ strategy.
“Nobody disputes that with the investment they’re making they won’t eventually be successful,” Matt Desch, CEO of Iridium Communications, told Reuters in August. “But how and when they become reliable is still uncertain.”