Bezos rocket wins 4th launch contract

Jeff Bezos-backed Blue Origin rocket project has won an additional launch contract, and has confirmed an earlier outline contract.

The new deal was announced at the Washington Satellite 2018 show when Bob Smith, Blue Origin’s CEO, said that Japan’s satellite operator SkyPerfect JSAT had contracted for a flight on a future New Glenn flight.

Already on the New Glenn manifest are satellites for Eutelsat, Thailand’s mu Space and now the Japanese satellite. The other launch contract will carry a cluster of OneWeb satellites.

The mu Space launch covers a geostationary satellite with a target date of “late 2020”. mu Space is working to support the growing demand for smart homes and smart cars, and development of smart cities in Asia-Pacific, and plans to scale up globally.  The company aims to use space technology to accelerate the development and adoption of useful smart applications

The New Glenn rocket (named in honour of astronaut John Glenn) is privately funded by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos and is a large variant of his debut New Shepard recoverable rocket.

The New Glenn rocket is scheduled to fly during 2020 and is designed to land on a floating barge downrange from its Cape Canaveral launch site.

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