Blue Origin Signs Geosat Launch for New Glenn

BANGKOK (mu Space PR) — mu Space Corp today announced at the 68th Annual International Astronautical Congress that they have entered into an agreement with Blue Origin to partner on a future launch of a geostationary satellite aboard their New Glenn orbital rocket. The launch is set to happen early in the next decade.

Commenting on the new partnership, mu Space CEO James Yenbamroong says, “We’ve decided to go with Blue Origin because we’re impressed with the company’s vision and engineering approach.”

In September last year, Blue Origin announced publicly the plan to build New Glenn, its orbital launch vehicle that will carry people and payloads to low-Earth orbit destinations and beyond. Named after the first American astronaut to orbit the Earth, John Glenn, the launch vehicle is designed to be reusable which enables lower cost access to space for Blue Origin’s customers.

“We look forward to launching mu Space on New Glenn to serve the people of Thailand and to be a part of expanding mu Space’s imprint on the Asia Pacific region,” says Robert Meyerson, Blue Origin’s President.

The company is working to support the growing demand in Asia-Pacific for broadband, mobile, broadcasting and smart city services using space based solutions.

According to mu Space’s long term plan, the company will launch its own geostationary orbit satellite in 2021. It also plans to become the first company to offer space tourism in Asia.

“mu Space also shares Blue Origin’s vision of developing space technologies that will accelerate the adoption of innovative technologies,” James added. “We want to deliver equitable access to communication services for all and improve quality of life on Earth.”

The agreement marks the first-time Blue Origin has partnered with an Asian launch customer.

  • Mr Snarky Answer

    And NG has many more bookings than does Vulcan (which is zero if I recall)…that should tell you something.

  • Aerospike

    Interesting.

    I just wish we would get a little more updates out of BO these days. It feels like it has been months since the last email update from them…

  • ThomasLMatula

    Private firms usually work in private unless there is something the public needs to know.

    But Jeff Bezos indicated in a recent interview that the revised and upgraded New Shepard 3 and capsule will likely start test flights by the
    end of the year. if they go well New Shepard 4 will start flying humans next year.

    I will add a link to it later today when I get into the office.

  • Aerospike

    Not that I fundamentally disagree with you here, but I guess there is this kind of conflict here of
    a) private company who wants to keep their cards close until there is something to show
    b) a topic of public interest (spaceflight) where people are used to get a more insight look because historically it used to be government agencies that worked in that field.
    c) space nerds spoiled by Armadillo Aerospace and SpaceX.
    d) in general a world of social media, where many persons/companies feel the urge to share even insignificant information, and people are used to this now.

    Of course nobody can force BO to be more open about their development, but personally I wish they would share more about their progress on something as important (in my opinion) as New Glenn.

  • ThomasLMatula

    That is also one of the legacies of the space race, NASA being open in contrast to the secrecy of the Soviet Union. But I prefer the BO approach to that of VG which has put out so much hype no believes them anymore.

  • ThomasLMatula

    Yes, this makes 7 payloads so far…

    http://spacenews.com/blue-origin-enlarges-new-glenns-payload-fairing-preparing-to-debut-upgraded-new-shepard/

    “New Glenn customers so far are Eutelsat and OneWeb for one launch and five launches, respectively.”

  • Hypx

    It tells us Blue Origin is willing to sign contracts for a rocket that doesn’t exist yet and ULA won’t. Not sure if that means much in all honesty.

  • Mr Snarky Answer

    Blue is and Arianespace are both signing contracts for future vehicles now. I don’t believe this is because of some corporate standards thing. Even if it were true they rejected a contract (which is crazy business) it would mean they have low confidence making the schedule.

  • Hypx

    The Ariane 6 rocket is a pretty straightforward update of the Ariane 5. Not to mention that Arianespace has decades of experience launching rockets. With Blue Origin, given how new they are to the launch industry and how completely unproven their rocket is, landing all these contracts doesn’t mean they are actually going to launch them anytime soon.

  • ThomasLMatula

    True, but the firms that are signing the contracts are aware of it. It’s a gamble they are willing to take. I also expect that they are wise enough to have a plan B if the schedule slips.

  • Mr Snarky Answer

    Ironic position since first flight of A5 was a failure precisely because of a lack of insight into performance changes between A4 and A5.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ariane_5

    “Ariane 5’s first test flight (Ariane 5 Flight 501) on 4 June 1996 failed, with the rocket self-destructing 37 seconds after launch because of a malfunction in the control software.[31] A data conversion from 64-bit floating point value to 16-bit signed integer value to be stored in a variable representing horizontal bias caused a processor trap (operand error)[32] because the floating point value was too large to be represented by a 16-bit signed integer. The software was originally written for the Ariane 4 where efficiency considerations”

  • Hypx

    Not really since Ariane 5 was a very different rocket from the Ariane 4. Not so with Ariane 6 and 5.

  • Mr Snarky Answer

    Yet a single incorrect cast of a variable caused the whole thing to get FTS’d.

  • windbourne

    It will be good to see new shep and glen launching and competing against others.
    In particular, SX really needs decent competition, and it does not exists.
    Hopefully, NG will do the trick.

  • windbourne

    well, VG was not really offering information, but all hype. Big difference.
    SX has actually done it fairly well.

  • windbourne

    yeah, but ULA is pretty much toast on Commercial and US gov is going to wait for a while until it is fully vetted. L-Mart/Boeing/ULA has a much worse record at meeting announced timelines, than does Musk/SX.

  • windbourne

    cool.
    I was not paying attention.

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    I’ve been amazed at how patient and forgiving the the private sector has been of Space X. I would expect similar treatment for BO at this point. It seems many of them did not have a plan B with respect to SX. In fact one company that did, bet wrong and further delayed their launch by jumping ship.

  • Mr Snarky Answer

    It is quite circular. They mostly didn’t have a plan B precisely because launch opportunities are inelastic and fixed capacity, as you have to build to order and long scheduling leads. There are a few exceptions to this but in general that’s the case. The private sector players want to have competition and flexibility and they see SpaceX as a path to get there. So they are willing to absorb the pain now to transform the market in the future.