Rendering of the “Ocean Reef” space station in orbit.
Washington- Jeff Bezos Blue Origin announced on Monday plans for a private space station called the “Orbital Reef.” It will be built in partnership with multiple space companies and will be rolled out between 2025 and 2030.
Blue Origin describes the Orbital Reef Station, which can accommodate up to 10 people, as a “multipurpose business park” in space, as well as “exotic hospitality” for space travelers.
Ocean Reef is designed to have about the same habitability as the International Space Station.
“We are just beginning to understand the tremendous impact that microgravity research, development and manufacturing can mean not only to explore and discover the universe, but also to improve life on Earth. “That’s what Redwire’s Executive Vice President Mike Gold told CNBC.
Redwire Space shares were temporarily suspended by the New York Stock Exchange after a surge after the announcement. Stock prices surged 40% from the previous closing price of $ 12.16.
Blue Origin will provide the space station’s “utility system” and “core module” and will launch the Ocean Reef using the New Glenn rocket.
Sierra Space contributes to its LIFE habitat (a large integrated flexible environment, essentially an inflatable space station module), using the Dream Chaser spacecraft to transport cargo and crew between stations. I am planning.
Red wire space, Published in SeptemberPerforms payload operations on the station and builds an expandable structure. Redwire also plans to use Orbital Reef for microgravity research, development and manufacturing.
Boeing will build modules focused on Ocean Reef science, perform station operations, and perform maintenance engineering.Aerospace giants will also be used That starliner capsule To transport crew and cargo to the station.
Genesis Engineering contributes to the “single-person spacecraft” system that the company describes as an alternative to spacesuits.
In a conference call with reporters, executives representing the team’s companies refused to identify how much each would expect to invest in Orbital Reef.
Blue Origin’s Vice President Brent Sherwood said the team did not intend to give a “specific number” about the cost of the Ocean Reef space station, adding that financial figures are commercially sensitive.
The Bezos company has been considering building a space station for over a year. CNBC previously reported, And earlier this month, we added a number of job listings to the Orbital Destinations team.
The founders, chairman, CEO, and president of Amazon Jeff Bezos will thumbs up when he speaks at an event on the Blue Origin space exploration program in Washington, DC, May 9, 2019.
Clodagh Kilcoyne | Reuters
Bezos’ Orbital Reef will reach a place where “millions of people live and work in space to benefit the planet,” especially by moving the “earth-stressing industry” into space. It fits perfectly into the center of Blue Origin’s vision.
Bezos personally increased his involvement at Blue Origin, After he resigned as CEO Amazon This summer.Although the company has been successful New Shepard rocket in orbit succeeds in two crew flights To date, Blue Origin has been scrutinized Due to a sharp rise in employee turnover When Allegations of safety issues and a “toxic” work culture, By a former employee.
Blue Origin Previously partnered with other major space companies, In partnership with Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman Draper then built a crew lunar module for NASA’s HLS program.
However, the Blue Origin-led team won the $ 579 million award for early development, but lost the next $ 2.9 billion contract. Of Elon Musk SpaceX earlier this year. Blue Origin has since brought NASA to court and filed a lawsuit. Against the space agency to cancel the Lunar Module Award.
Blue Origin will bid on one of NASA’s upcoming “Commercial LEO Destination” program contracts, but it’s not just the Bezos company. NASA’s director of commercial space flight Phil McAlister told CNBC last month that the program “received about 12 proposals” for contracts from various companies.
The CLD program represents an effort to rely on private companies for the new space station, as NASA plans to abolish the International Space Station by the end of the decade. As a result, space agencies expect to save more than $ 1 billion annually.
“We are in the second golden age of space exploration and development,” said Gold of Redwire.
Last week, another private space station was announced by another corporate team: Nanoracks, Voyager Space, and Lockheed Martin A station called Star Lab is under construction and is scheduled to start operation by 2027.
The Starlab is designed to carry up to four astronauts and occupies about one-third the volume of the ISS.
“Star Lab” Space Station Concept Art
NASA has already begun funding a company’s ambitions under a contract separate from the CLD program. $ 140 million Axiom Space. Axiom plans to build a module that connects to the ISS. When the ISS retires, Axiom removes the module and turns it into a free-flying space station.
Diagram of the company’s three modules connected to the International Space Station.
Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin Announces Ocean Reef’s Private Space Station
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