Blue Origin is working towards the first launch of its super heavy-lift rocket, the New Glenn. Bezos’s rocket company just released a video showing how the rocket will launch and land. Spoiler: It’s a lot like SpaceX’s Falcon 9.
In the video embedded below, the rocket takes off from a pad close to a company facility and lands vertically on a large barge in a similar fashion to that used by SpaceX. Though in this animated video, the landing barge appears to be built on a ship that can house a crew. SpaceX’s barge is unmanned and autonomous.
This video is part of a media tour for the rocket. Just yesterday Bezos revealed the BE-4 engine that will provide the lift for the large rocket. Today CEO Jeff Bezos revealed the company signed a contract with France-based TV provider Eutelsat to put a satellite in geostationary orbit sometime between 2021-2022.
SpaceX and Blue Origin are nearly engaged in a new space race albeit one without dire consequences. The two American companies are racing towards similar goals of sustainable space flight through the reuse of rockets that can be landed. Blue Origin beat SpaceX with the launch and landing of the New Shepard rocket in 2015 though SpaceX managed the same with a much-larger Falcon 9 in late 2015 and several times since including a few landings on a barge ship. Now both companies are reportedly aiming for the moon. This isn’t a zero-sum game; humanity wins if both companies win.