Blue Origin is a space company owned by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, according tomedia reports. Recently, the company revealed plans to send cargo to the moon in 2023. The mission is to support plans to send astronauts to the moon as early as 2024. The resupply mission could deliver a ton of supplies to the moon’s surface by 2023.
Steve Squyres, chief scientist at Blue Origin, provided details of the cargo delivery mission at a virtual seminar at the University of Washington’s Center for Space Policy and Research. The virtual seminar is not the first time Blue Origin has talked about a potential lunar cargo mission, having previously been mentioned at another space conference two years ago.
Squyres’ statement did confirm that the cargo transport mission remains part of Blue Origin’s future plans. A cargo mission before an astronaut might land on the moon would be some kind of rehearsal. The cargo mission will allow Blue Origin to test the crew landing system’s technology.
Bezos has an ambitious vision not only to explore the moon’s surface again, but also to continue to exist there. NASA plans to send astronauts back to the moon in the next few years through its Artemis mission. There is no indication that NASA has signed a contract with Blue Origin to deliver cargo to the lunar watch prior to these missions.
The Blue Origin lander under development could carry one metric ton of cargo to the moon’s surface. The cargo could include emergency supplies, tools, spare parts and a rover for Artemis astronauts to use on the moon’s surface. The delivery of a variety of cargoes can help transport the supplies needed to establish a long-term presence on the moon. For now, Blue Origin is working with Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and Draper to develop the lander.