KENT, Wash. — Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos’ space effort now officially has more space. To be precise, 232,885 square feet more space.
这是来自今天的丝带仪式的底线Blue Origin’s新总部大楼 - 从其原始总部和新的谢泼德副船气宇宙飞船厂的街道街对面的千万美元设施。
Blue Origin首席执行官鲍勃·史密斯told GeekWire that the new HQ was required because “we’re growing like crazy.”
The new structure, built on a 30.7-acre site that the companypurchased a little more than two years agofor $14 million, is built to accommodate 1,500 of those employees. Hundreds more are based elsewhere in the Kent area, south of Seattle, as well as at Blue Origin’s suborbital launch site in West Texas, the Florida rocket factory where Blue Origin’s New Glenn orbital-class rocket will be assembled, and at the site of its future BE-4 rocket engine factory in Alabama.
The mission that faced the construction team, headed by general contractorSierra Construction，是创造一个创新，有趣的设施，即在2000年的Bezos建立回来的公司品牌上。并迅速完成。
Smith said the builders succeeded. Construction started last January, and the project was finished in time to start moving in employees last month (and serve as the venue for Blue Origin’s annual holiday party).
A mockup of Blue Origin’s蓝月亮登月器只是beyon,放置在一个完全开放的聚会空间d the lobby, serves as the building’s centerpiece — within sight of the employee lounge and kitchen facilities. An enclosed conference room on the mezzanine has a big picture window that looks down at Blue Moon. Workstations are placed in clusters beneath the hangar-style sloped roof in one of the block-long arms of the building’s “U.”
新的HQ被称为O'Neill Building - 荣誉普林斯顿物理学家Gerard O'Neillvision of giant space coloniesinspired Bezos’ oft-mentioned dream of having “millions of people living and working in space.”
作为过渡的一部分，旧的HQ也被命名。它现在被称为verne建筑，在点头上Jules Verne-style rocket that graces its lobby.
Smith said the O’Neill Building’s employees will be working on Blue Moon and New Glenn, among other projects. “We try to co-locate a lot of our employees working on the same things,” he said. “We have some of the New Glenn team that will be over here, but we can’t fit ’em all.”
Fortunately, Blue Origin was able to fit scores of VIPs, and hundreds of watching employees, into the Blue Moon gathering space for today’s official ceremonies. Smith played up the local angle in his opening remarks, saying that Blue Origin will be pursuing its space program “from a headquarters, and a population, that is actually based here in Kent.”
“Every single time I come down for a tour, I feel like I’ve missed the last numbers, because I listen in and I say, ‘OK, they’re going to have 2,000 employees … oh, wait, no, they just said 3,000 … no, it’s going to be 4,000.’ ”
“We are going to space, my friends, we are going to colonize space,” Heck said. “In my children’s lifetime, we will colonize the moon. And Blue Moon will be there. In my grandchildren’s or great-grandchildren’s time, we will colonize the rest of the galaxy. In my grandchildren’s time, we will confirm that there is some level of life on other planets. And when we do all these things, Blue Origin will be there and will have been the cause of it.”
After the speeches, it was time for the ribbon-cutting ceremony, conducted just outside the entryway with rain dripping off the eaves. Actually, make that “ceremonies”: Smith wielded the giant scissors twice — first for the benefit of the elected officials, then with a fresh ribbon for the project’s contractors.
Bill Ellis, chief economic development officer for the City of Kent, said he expects Blue Origin and the O’Neill Building to add to aregional space heritage that goes back to the Apollo era. In March, Kent officials will seek to have the Boeing-built Apollo lunar rovers placed on Washington state’s register of historic places.
埃利斯援引波音和蓝色起源的角色争辩说，肯特谷在佛罗里达州的太空海岸旁边的太空历史上。“在电影中，那是美国宇航局发射的地方，”他说。“但所有的知识产权 - 这一切发生在这里。”
During today’s interview, Smith gave a status report on Blue Origin’s projects:
- wakelast month’s uncrewed New Shepard suborbital test flightin West Texas — the 12th of the New Shepard program — Blue Origin is planning a couple of uncrewed demonstration flights to make sure the way is clear to start flying people. Smith said the current plan is to start sending people on suborbital space trips in 2020, but he declined to be more specific on the timing. Smith said he wanted to make sure that the New Shepard team doesn’t feel any undue schedule pressure. “We want to fly when we’re ready, and when we’re safe,” he said.
- Blue Origin’sBE-4 rocket engine到目前为止，已达到6,500秒的测试火灾。“发动机的性能看起来很好，”史密斯说。“我们正试图确保耐用性是可重复使用的发动机所需的耐用性。”他说，今年，发动机将交付给United Alliance，以便与Ula的下一代Vulcan火箭一起使用。由于2021年，发动机也被推动到新的Glenn的第一阶段助推器。
- TheNew Glenn orbital-class rocket史密斯表示，正在为Blue Origin的佛罗里达州塑造。“我们实际上已经制作了我们的第一组开发硬件以及我们的第一个整流整理，”他说。他说，蓝色起源的Cape Canaveration MaillaverAs Mail发射复合体也“相当迅速结合起来”，新的Glenn Recovery Ship是在Pensacola，Fla的封装。“我们应该相对较早地为此充分利用，”史密斯说。
- Last month, Blue Origin’s nonprofit educational effort, known as the对未来的俱乐部, flew 8,000 postcards to space and back on New Shepard, and those postcards are now being sent back to the students who sent them in. “We hope to do more along those lines,” he said. “I don’t know if it’ll be every flight, but we’re going to try to do as many flights as we possibly can. If we get the number of cards that we’re targeting, we’ll be stuffing them in every nook and cranny.”