Billionaire Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin will launch a mission to Mars for NASA. This information was confirmed by the space agency, writes The Register.
We are talking about the ESCAPADE mission to study the electromagnetic fields of the Red Planet. To do this, Blue Origin will launch two spacecraft using the New Glenn launch vehicle.
ESCAPADE has been assigned a Class D rating, which means that NASA considers it a low-priority, high-risk mission. The cost of the mission is $79 million, which is a rather small amount compared to other billion-dollar projects.
NASA said that the launch of ESCAPADE is scheduled for August 2024.
“It’s an incredibly ambitious first launch for New Glenn and we really appreciate the partnership,” the space agency said. “We will very likely be the very first launch of New Glenn.”
It is noteworthy that the Blue Origin launch vehicle has not yet performed test flights into space. Compared to rival SpaceX, the New Glenn is more powerful than the Falcon 9, but less powerful than the Falcon Heavy.
If the plan is realized, Jeff Bezos will be ahead of his competitor Elon Musk on Mars.