The shuttle's successors

Of the four companies picked by Nasa to receive funding to develop a replacement for the shuttle, perhaps the least is known about Blue Origin and its space vehicle. The crew capsule, shown below, is designed to be launched on an Atlas V rocket and ultimately Blue Origin's own Reusable Booster System.

Diagram showing details of Blue Origin

"We are committed to developing safe and affordable commercial human space flight"

Rob Meyerson, Blue Origin

Blue Origin

  • Unknown launch date
  • Atlas V launch vehicle
  • 7 total crew capacity
  • $25.7m Nasa funding so far
  • Lands vertically

Blue Origin was founded by Amazon's Jeff Bezos in 2000. Work already completed under the company's New Shepard programme includes test flights of a sub-orbital vehicle as far back as 2006. Designed to be reusable, the Goddard vehicle, pictured below, took off and landed vertically.

Blue Origin

*Total funding given in round two of Nasa's Commercial Crew Development programme (CCDev).

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Space shuttle

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