Blue Origin teaming up with NASA to test out new technology in space

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Jun 6, 2016, 9:47 AM EDT

Blue Origin is slowly giving SpaceX a run for its money, and now Jeff Bezos’ private spaceflight company has teamed up with NASA to transport new technologies to the edge of space. The missions will use Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket, which the company has proven is more than capable of launching and landing.

The New Shepard Rocket was partially developed to carry space tourists up for a few minutes of weightless, but since it’s working out so well, it seems Blue Origin is looking to leverage the success a bit more. The deal is part of NASA's Flight Opportunities Program, designed for the space agency to support new and emerging technologies. The missions will carry tech 62 miles above the Earth to test it out, to ensure it works as advertised.

“We are pleased to have Blue Origin join our cadre of Flight Opportunities service providers,” Steve Jurczyk, associate administrator for NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD) in Washington, said in a statement. “Adding additional flight providers enables NASA and the broader aerospace community to demonstrate and transition space technologies, developing new capabilities faster and, potentially, at lower cost.”

With the new contract, Blue Origin joins Masten Space Systems, Inc., Near Space Corporation, UP Aerospace, Inc., Virgin Galactic, LLC, and World View Enterprises, Inc., as part of the Flight Opportunities Program.

(Via The Verge)