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Blue Origin achieves second successful rocket landing

24 January 2016

During this latest launch, the New Shepard booster that flew above the Karman line and then landed vertically at its launch site last November has now flown and landed again.

Blue Origin's New Shepard rocket coming in to land (courtesy of Blue Origin)

This time, the New Shepard rocket reached an apogee of 101.7km before both capsule and booster returned to Earth for recovery and reuse. Amazon.com and Blue Origin founder, Jeff Bezos describes the latest launch in his online blog.

Last November, the New Shepard space vehicle flew to space, reaching an altitude of 100.5km before making a successful landing.

Named in honour of the first American in space, Alan Shepard, the New Shepard vertical take-off and vertical landing vehicle is designed to carry six astronauts to altitudes beyond 100km, the internationally-recognised boundary of space. Blue Origin astronauts will experience weightlessness and views through the largest windows to ever fly in space.

As demonstrated by this latest launch, the New Shepard space vehicle is fully reusable. Operated from Blue Origin’s West Texas launch site, the vehicle comprises two elements — a crew capsule in which the astronauts ride and a rocket booster powered by a single BE-3 liquid hydrogen, liquid oxygen engine. At lift-off, the BE-3 delivers 110,000 pounds of thrust.

YouTube video: Blue Origin


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