Jeff Bezos introduced the latest concept from his company Blue Origin at the Satellite 2017 conference, the New Glenn rocket, which features a reusable first stage. Blue Origin released a video detailing the rocket’s specs.
The rocket doesn’t exist yet, but it already has a customer. Satellite provider Eutelsat will be the rocket’s first client.
“We couldn’t hope for a better first partner,” Bezos announced as he was joined onstage by Rodolphe Belmer, CEO of the French-based satellite company.
The rocket’s inaugural trip is scheduled for 2021, giving Blue Origin a few years to perfect its reusable rocket technology. The company plans to safely land the rocket’s first stage and reuse it with a quick and simple turnaround process.
“We need to get to a place ultimately that is much more like commercial airliners,” Bezos said.
The New Glenn rocket will come in two forms — a two-stage and three-stage. Both rockets will be 23 feet in diameter. The two-stage will be 270 feet tall, while the three-stage will rise 313 feet. Both will be larger than SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket.
Blue Origin also offered updates on the progress of its newest engine this week, the BE-4. Engineers unveiled the engine, fully assembled for the first time, on Monday.
The BE-4 will power the New Glenn’s second stage. United Launch Alliance also plans to use BE-4 to power its new rocket, the Vulcan.
Filed Under: Aerospace + defense