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BE-4 engine test
蓝色原产地’s BE-4 rocket engine lights up for a full-thrust test firing in Texas. (Jeff Bezos via Instagram)


“Perfect night,” Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, who created the Blue Origin space venture more than two decades ago, wrote in anInstagram post。“坐在我的拾取卡车后面的月球和星星下,看着另一个长期,全力推力的蓝色起源的热火试验。”

The post featured a shot of Bezos and other spectators looking on at the rising rocket plume from afar, as well as a video with closer perspectives of the firing.

蓝色原产地is testing the engine in preparation for its use in the company’s New Glenn rocket as well as United Launch Alliance’s semi-reusable Vulcan rocket. Both launch vehicles are currently due to make their debut late this year.

The BE-4, which uses liquefied natural gas for fuel, was developed at Blue Origin’s headquarters in Kent, Wash., with tests conducted at Bezos’ West Texas ranch (which is one of his pandemic hangouts).

Last year, Blue Origin在阿拉巴马州开了一家工厂在生产基础上拒绝火箭发动机。每个BE-4都设计用于爆炸高达550,000磅的推力 - 超过Spacex的甲烷燃料的推力约10%狗万平台Raptor engine

上个月,蓝色起源provided two engines to United Launch Alliance for pathfinder ground testing和飞行准备的版本将延时送达发射Astrobotic的第一个月球兰德在一个普拉肯火箭上。

Ula首席执行官Tory Bruno表示,他确信Be-4发动机将在2021年准备好发射。当他在Twitter上被问到了什么,让他涉及到沃思开发努力时最焦虑,这就是他回答的方式:

In other rocket news, the U.S. Space Force closed the books as of Dec. 31 on the participation of Blue Origin and Northrop Grumman in amultibillion-dollar program supporting the development of new launch vehicles对于国家安全任务。

Last August,这两家公司丢失了Ula和Spacexin a competition for the next phase of development support, but it took months to work out the termination of the contracts.

In a statement provided to Space News, the Space and Missile Systems Center said Blue Origin was paid $255.5 million for work conducted on New Glenn between October 2018 and December 2020, while Northrop Grumman received $531.7 million over the same period for work on its now-canceledOmegA rocket



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