New Shepard Of Blue Origin Successfully Lands A Reusable Rocket
The New Shepard rocket of Blue Origin is the first reusable rocket to travel into space and successfully back on Earth. The private company established by Jeff Bezos, co-founder of Amazon, accomplished the historic feat on November 23, 2015. The rocket went up to 330,000 feet and returned to Earth after it grazed the lower portions of space.
On its way up, an empty crew capsule separated from the rocket before it successfully touched down on Earth. Hydraulic problems prevented a similar landing attempt of the company in April. The recent achievement increases the potential for reusable and cheaper spaceflight.
SpaceX, competitor of the company, was not as successful when it attempted to land its Falcon 9 rocket. Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX, tweeted a congratulatory message to Blue Origin for the successful vertical takeoff and landing test. However, he indicated that the rockets of his company can go higher and faster than its competitor.
The Falcon 9 of SpaceX is designed to reach orbital space to allow it to deliver supplies to the International Space Station. The company was able to achieve this in a number of occasions. NASA recently gave SpaceX the second-in-history order for private companies to transport astronauts to the International Space Station in 2017. Boeing is the first company in the order of NASA. On the other hand, New Shepard is not yet on the list since its design limits it to sub-orbital space.
Previously, rockets can only be used once and spent rockets end up at the bottom of the ocean. The two companies said a good amount of money can be saved for space flight if spent rockets are reused. The recent historic landing of Blue Shepard indicates that Blue Origin may be able to start sending research payloads into space by 2016. Crewed flight may follow at a later time.
It is, however, important to clear up the difference between "space" and "orbit", as described well by https://t.co/7PD42m37fZ
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 24, 2015