Blue Origin’s New Shepard: Space tourism for the masses?

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blue origin new Shepard
A Blue Origin New Shepard rocket launches from Launch Site One in West Texas north of Van Horn on March 31, 2022. - The NS-20 mission carries Blue Origins New Shepard Chief Architect Gary Lai, Marty Allen, Sharon Hagle, Marc Hagle, Jim Kitchen, and Dr. George Nield into space. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP) (Photo by PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images)

What you’ll learn from this blog post

In this blog post, you have learned about:

  • What Blue Origin’s New Shepard program is and its goals
  • The New Shepard vehicle and its safety features
  • The benefits of the New Shepard program for the space industry and society as a whole
  • The future of the New Shepard program and its potential impact on space tourism and exploration

Blue Origin’s New Shepard is a suborbital launch vehicle and spacecraft designed for space tourism. It is named after Alan Shepard, the first American in space. New Shepard consists of a reusable booster rocket and a crew capsule. The capsule can carry up to six passengers and can reach an altitude of over 62 miles (100 km), which is above the internationally recognized boundary of space.

New Shepard is still under development, but it has the potential to make us space tourism more affordable and accessible than it has ever been before. The vehicle is also being used to develop new technologies that can be used for future space exploration missions.

Space tourism is the commercialization of space travel for private citizens. It is a relatively new industry, but it is growing rapidly. There are a number of reasons why people are interested in space tourism. For some, it is a chance to experience the thrill of space travel and to see the Earth from a unique perspective. For others, it is a way to support the development of the space industry and to help pave the way for future human exploration of space.

Blue Origin’s New Shepard program is an important step forward in making space tourism a reality. The vehicle is safe, reliable, and reusable, which makes it ideal for commercial space travel. Blue Origin is also committed to making space tourism more affordable and accessible to everyone.

In this blog post, we will take a closer look at Blue Origin’s New Shepard program. We will discuss the vehicle, the program’s goals, and the benefits of the program for the space industry and for society as a whole. We will also discuss the future of the New Shepard program and its potential impact on the space industry and on society as a whole.

Blue Origin

Blue Origin is a private space exploration company founded by Jeff Bezos in 2000. The company’s goal is to make space travel accessible to everyone. Blue Origin is developing a number of different vehicles and technologies to achieve this goal, including the New Shepard suborbital launch vehicle, the New Glenn orbital launch vehicle, and the Blue Moon human landing system.

The New Shepard program is Blue Origin’s first program to launch people into space. New Shepard is a suborbital launch vehicle, which means that it does not reach orbit around the Earth. Instead, it launches to an altitude of over 62 miles (100 km) and then returns to Earth. This type of flight profile allows passengers to experience weightlessness for a few minutes and to see the curvature of the Earth.

New Shepard is a reusable launch vehicle, which means that the booster rocket and crew capsule can be used multiple times. This helps to reduce the cost of space tourism and makes it more accessible to people.

Blue Origin has completed 22 successful New Shepard missions, including six crewed missions. The company plans to continue flying regular space tourism missions in the coming years.

New Shepard program

The New Shepard program is Blue Origin’s first program to launch people into space. New Shepard is a suborbital launch vehicle, which means that it does not reach orbit around the Earth. Instead, it launches to an altitude of over 62 miles (100 km) and then returns to Earth. This type of flight profile allows passengers to experience weightlessness for a few minutes and to see the curvature of the Earth.

New Shepard consists of a reusable booster rocket and a crew capsule. The crew capsule can carry up to six passengers and is equipped with large windows so passengers can enjoy the view of space.

The New Shepard program began in 2012 with the first successful test launch of the booster rocket. The first successful crewed flight of New Shepard took place on July 20, 2021. Since then, Blue Origin has completed six successful crewed missions of New Shepard.

The program is an important step forward in making space tourism a reality. The vehicle is safe, reliable, and reusable, which makes it ideal for commercial space travel. Blue Origin is also committed to making space tourism more affordable and accessible to everyone.

New Shepard vehicle

The New Shepard vehicle consists of a reusable booster rocket and a crew capsule.

The booster rocket is powered by a single BE-3 engine. The BE-3 engine is a liquid oxygen/liquid hydrogen engine that is more efficient and environmentally friendly than traditional rocket engines.

New Shepard vehicle (Image Credit: Blue Origin)

The crew capsule is pressurized and air-conditioned. It is also equipped with large windows so passengers can enjoy the view of space.

The New Shepard vehicle can carry up to six passengers and can reach an altitude of over 62 miles (100 km), which is above the internationally recognized boundary of space.

The New Shepard vehicle is launched from a launch site in West Texas. The booster rocket accelerates the crew capsule to an altitude of over 62 miles (100 km). The crew then experiences weightlessness for a few minutes. The booster rocket then separates from the crew capsule and returns to Earth. The crew capsule then descends back to Earth under parachutes.

New Shepard flights

A typical New Shepard flight lasts for about 11 minutes. The booster rocket accelerates the crew capsule to an altitude of over 62 miles (100 km). The crew then experiences weightlessness for a few minutes. The booster rocket then separates from the crew capsule and returns to Earth. The crew capsule then descends back to Earth under parachutes.

New Shepard safety

New Shepard has been designed with safety as a top priority. The vehicle has a number of safety features, including a redundant propulsion system and a launch abort system.

The redundant propulsion system ensures that the vehicle can still reach space even if one of the engines fails. The launch abort system can be used to separate the crew capsule from the booster rocket in the event of an emergency.

New Shepard cost

The cost of a New Shepard flight has not been publicly disclosed. However, it is expected to be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. This makes it more affordable than other space tourism options, such as a flight on Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo.

Benefits of the New Shepard program

The New Shepard program has a number of benefits for the space industry and for society as a whole.

Making space travel more affordable and accessible

The New Shepard program is helping to make space travel more affordable and accessible to the public. The cost of a New Shepard flight is still relatively high, but it is lower than the cost of other space tourism options. As the program continues to develop and mature, the cost of flights is expected to come down even further.

ALSO READ : DISCOVERING NEW FRONTIERS: THE FUTURE OF SPACE TRAVEL

Developing new technologies for space exploration

The New Shepard program is also helping to develop new technologies that can be used for future space exploration missions. For example, New Shepard is using a new type of engine called the BE-3 engine. The BE-3 engine is more efficient and environmentally friendly than traditional rocket engines. The technologies developed for the New Shepard program could be used to develop new spacecraft and launch vehicles for future missions to the Moon and Mars.

Inspiring a new generation of scientists and engineers

The New Shepard program is also inspiring a new generation of scientists and engineers to pursue careers in space exploration. The program is showing that it is possible to develop reusable launch vehicles and to make space travel more affordable and accessible to the public. This is inspiring young people to study science and engineering and to pursue careers in the space industry.

Future of the New Shepard program

Blue Origin has a number of plans for the future of the New Shepard program.

Regular space tourism missions

Blue Origin plans to continue flying regular space tourism missions on New Shepard. The company is also working to make the program more affordable and accessible to people from all walks of life.

New Glenn orbital launch vehicle

An artist’s illustration of Blue Origin’s New Glenn rocket in flight.(Image credit: Blue Origin)

Blue Origin is developing a new orbital launch vehicle called New Glenn. New Glenn will be able to carry payloads and people into orbit, which will open up new possibilities for space tourism and exploration.

New Glenn is expected to make its first flight in 2023. The vehicle will be able to carry up to 45 tons of payload into orbit. This will make it one of the most powerful orbital launch vehicles in operation.

Blue Moon human landing system

Blue moon landing system. (Image credit: Blue Origin)

Blue Origin is also developing a human landing system called Blue Moon. Blue Moon is designed to land astronauts on the Moon and is part of NASA’s Artemis program.

Blue Moon is expected to make its first landing on the Moon in 2025. The vehicle will be able to carry up to six astronauts and up to 13,600 kg of cargo to the Moon.

Impact of the New Shepard program on the space industry

The New Shepard program is having a positive impact on the space industry in a number of ways.

New Shepard and the development of reusable launch vehicles

New Shepard is helping to drive the development of reusable launch vehicles. Reusable launch vehicles are more efficient and environmentally friendly than traditional launch vehicles. They can also be used to reduce the cost of space travel.

New Shepard and the growth of the space tourism industry

New Shepard is also helping to grow the space tourism industry. Space tourism is a new and growing industry that has the potential to generate billions of dollars in revenue and create thousands of jobs.

ALSO READ: SPACE TOURISM DREAMS: HOW CLOSE ARE WE TO VACATIONING IN SPACE?

New Shepard and the future of space exploration

New Shepard is also helping to pave the way for future space exploration missions. The technologies developed for New Shepard could be used to develop new spacecraft and launch vehicles for future missions to the Moon and Mars.

Overall, the New Shepard program is having a positive impact on the space industry and is helping to make space travel more affordable, accessible, and sustainable.

Conclusion

Blue Origin’s New Shepard program is a groundbreaking initiative that is helping to make space travel more affordable, accessible, and sustainable. The program is also developing new technologies that could be used for future space exploration missions.

The New Shepard program has the potential to revolutionize the space industry and make space travel a reality for more people than ever before. The program is also inspiring a new generation of scientists and engineers to pursue careers in space exploration.

Overall, the New Shepard program is a positive development for the space industry and for society as a whole. It is a program that is worth watching and supporting.

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