Jeff Bezos’ dream project Blue Origin has taken another step close to perfecting its reusable rocket module. Company has successfully completed the fourth launch and landing of their New Shepard rocket and crew capsule. With another nominal flight test, Jeff Bezos’ rocket company is marching toward their goal of becoming the first private company to send tourists into space. And along the way, they’re perfecting the ability to reuse suborbital rockets over and over again – a feat that’s never been done before. After four successful launches and landings with the same New Shepard vehicle, Blue Origin is starting to make this whole suborbital rocket reusability thing look easy.
These reusable rocket tests are designed to help Blue Origin prove out the technology they need to be able to launch and land boosters in the future. The purpose of the fourth Blue Origin mission was to recreate an intentional crash landing of the crew capsule. Jeff Bezos’ wanted to test a scenario similar to Apollo 15, where-in one of the parachute fails to deploy during the landing of the crew capsule. The company is using these launches to successfully test out each and every scenario before sending humans to space. This mission also revolved around testing the robustness of the crew capsule in a situation of such a failure. And even with the crash test situation, both the reusable rocket and the crew capsule made their way back within 11 minutes.
The New Shepard system is designed to bring a group of paying customers to suborbital space and deliver them back to Earth again. The space tourists will see the planet against the blackness of space and feel weightless for minutes during part of the flight. A seat aboard New Shepard should run about $250,000, according to Bezos. Company has said that crewed tests of the New Shepard could begin as early as next year.Highlights from the third flight: