Blue Origin Tests New Engine

By Frank Morring, Jr., Guy Norris
Source: Aviation Week & Space Technology

Since its founding in 2000 with a staff of 10, Meyerson says, Blue Origin has grown to about 300 engineers and other specialists, and ultimately may hire another 100. Its website lists openings in guidance, navigation and control, structural engineering, mechanical systems design, fluid systems design, and avionics, among many other positions.

Meyerson declined to discuss pricing or specific schedules during his teleconference with reporters, but made clear Blue Origin has ambitious commercial plans and is in it for the long haul. The company is awaiting a Government Accountability Office decision in a dispute with competitor SpaceX over use of Launch Complex 39A at Kennedy Space Center and has a number of irons in the fire with potential government customers.

“Over the next several years you are going to see us flying our New Shepard suborbital system in a development phase, and then starting to fly astronaut passengers over the next several years,” says Meyerson.

“In parallel we'll be developing our orbital space vehicle, with first flights targeted for the 2018 timeframe. That will be developmental flights of our orbital launch vehicle. [Now] we're developing this engine for our New Shepard system and our orbital system, but we think it has applicability to both government and other commercial launch systems as well,” Meyerson concludes.

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