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Air Force awards multi-billion dollar launch contracts to SpaceX and ULA



The US Air Force awarded Elon Musk’s SpaceX and United Launch Alliance a multi-billion-dollar contract on Friday, a joint venture between Lockheed Martin and Boeing, as Part of its national security space launch service.

ULA will conduct two launches in 2022 and receive $337 million, while SpaceX will conduct one launch in the same year and receive $31

6 million. After that, ULA will get 60% of the launch contract and SpaceX will get 40% of the launch contract, which will total billions of dollars.

Tory Bruno, president and CEO of ULA, touted his company’s new Vulcan Centaur rocket, which will replace the old Atlas and Delta rockets.

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He said in a statement: “Vulcan Centaur continues to provide our unparalleled reliability and orbital accuracy while providing higher performance and greater endurance, which will continue to provide reliable and punctual space access for the future. ”

On Friday, SpaceX did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Northrop Grumman and Jeff Bezos’ “Blue Origin” are also competing for contracts.

Blue Origin CEO Bob Smith said he was disappointed by the Air Force’s decision not to accept the offer, which was based on an “unprecedented private investment of more than $2.5 billion” in the New Glenn rocket. But they will continue to develop it.

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The first stage of the New Glenn rocket is designed to be reused 25 times. SpaceX has also designed reusable rockets, such as Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy. Musk’s company said: “A fast and reusable space vehicle can reduce the cost of going to space by a hundredfold.”

The Air Force said on Friday that since 2013, signing with private companies in this way has saved them $7 billion.

Colonel Robert Bongiovi, director of SMC Launch Enterprise, said in a statement: “This is a very difficult decision. I am grateful for the hard work in completing their commercial launch system so that their commercial launch system can be affordable and reliable. To meet our increasing national security requirements.”

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