Watch Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin NS-19 stay: First six passenger crew

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Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin will launch its New Shepard rocket on Saturday for the sixth time this year, a mission in which the company will launch six passengers simultaneously for the first time.

Named NS-19, this New Shepard mission will bring a crew of two guests and four customers: astronaut Alan Shepard’s daughter, Laura Shepard Churchley, TV presenter and NFL star Michael Strahan, space manager Dylan Taylor, investor Evan Dick, the venture capitalist Lane Bess and his son Cameron Bess.

The company is currently aiming for NS-19 to launch at 9:45 a.m. EST.

The NS-19 crew takes a look at their journey into space. From left: Laura Shepard Churchley, Michael Strahan, Evan Dick, Lane Bess, Cameron Bess and Dylan Taylor.

Blue origin

The NS-19 mission will bring Blue Origin to 14 people launching into space in 2021. The year has seen a spate of private manned space activity, with three US companies taking passengers over the edge of space or into orbit.

The rocket will launch from Blue Origin’s private facility in West Texas and reach over 100,000 kilometers (or more than 340,000 feet in altitude) before safely returning to Earth a few minutes later. From start to finish, the launch is expected to take around 11 minutes. The crew should experience weightlessness for about three minutes.

New Shepard’s capsule will accelerate to more than three times the speed of sound to exceed the 80-kilometer (roughly 50 miles) limit that the U.S. is using to mark the edge of space. The capsule is flown autonomously without a human pilot and returns under a set of parachutes to land in the Texas desert.

The New Shepard rocket booster is reusable and will attempt to return and land on a concrete platform near the launch site.

The company also flies New Shepard for cargo missions, as in Augustcarrying research payloads in the capsule.

This photo of Blue Origin, Blue Origins New Shepard rocket, is on a launch pad near Van Horn, Texas on Tuesday July 20, 2021.

Blue origin | Reuters

Lewis Hamilton showcases his distinctive sense of fashion in royal blue jacket with purple tapes

Lewis Hamilton turned around as he competed in the Abu Dhabi Formula 1 Grand Prix at the Yas Marina Circuit in the United Arab Emirates.

The 36-year-old racing driver is aiming for an eighth record title on Sunday, but the winner of the last four F1 titles has been pushed by the 24-year-old all season Max Verstappen.

And on Saturday, Lewis made sure all eyes were on him when he showed up in a royal blue jacket with large pockets and purple ribbons in the front and matching pants.

Stylish: Lewis Hamilton, 36, wore a royal blue jacket with large pockets and purple ribbons at the Abu Dhabi Formula 1 Grand Prix at the Yas Marina Circuit in the United Arab Emirates on Saturday

The athlete wore a sky blue T-shirt under his jacket and had a chunky silver chain around his neck.

His t-shirt matched his Gucci shoes, which had a white border around the bottom green and red stripe on the side.

Lewis could be seen protecting his eyes from the bright sunlight by opting for dark sunglasses.

Fashion forward: The athlete wore a sky blue T-shirt under his jacket and had a chunky silver chain around his neck

He wore black face covering to protect himself and others from the coronavirus.

The star wore her hair in a ponytail behind her head to complete her look for the day.

His excursion takes place when Formula 1 announced a contract to continue the race in Abu Dhabi, in which the season finale will take place on Sunday, until 2030.

Brave style: Lewis wore dark sunglasses and he wore black face cover to protect himself and others from the coronavirus

Brave style: Lewis wore dark sunglasses and he wore black face cover to protect himself and others from the coronavirus

The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix takes place at the Yas Marina Circuit and was added to the F1 calendar in 2009.

Sunday’s race marks the conclusion of three consecutive events in the Middle East and the fourth and final stop in the region on the F1 calendar.

“We are pleased to announce that under this new agreement we will be driving in Abu Dhabi until 2030,” said F1 Managing Director and President Stefano Domenicali on Thursday.

“We’re really looking forward to the season finale this weekend, when more Formula 1 history will be written.”

Hamilton used three wins in a row to draw level with Verstappen in the overall standings before the final.

It is the fourth time that the title will be decided in Yas Marina, where the championship was held in 2010, 2014 and 2016.

Max has insisted that he be “treated differently” from other drivers and that he will not change his driving style after receiving two time penalties in the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

The Dutchman has refused to give in to his conviction that he did nothing wrong in the penultimate race of the season and is going into his championship showdown Lewis.

Max was deeply involved in fights with Lewis twice at Turn 1, both times asked to relinquish position – and received a five-second time penalty for gaining an off-track advantage.

Winner: Lewis and Max Verstappen (L) celebrate on the podium at the end of the French Formula 1 Grand Prix (picture in June 2021)

Winner: Lewis and Max Verstappen (L) celebrate on the podium at the end of the French Formula 1 Grand Prix (picture in June 2021)

At the most controversial moment of the Grand Prix, Max was found guilty after the Hamilton brake check on lap 37 – after braking to let the Briton through, which resulted in a ten-second penalty.

Lewis hesitated to overtake Max in front of the DRS line so he could gain the speed advantage on the main straight before the Dutchman hit the brakes and the Briton damaged his front wing after cutting off the Red Bull’s rear.

Looking back on Thursday’s race, Max said that “clearly things don’t apply to everyone”.

As reported by Motorsporthe said, ‘The things I did about defense, two other guys did about racing too, and they didn’t even get a mention or a penalty.

“So I don’t get it because I thought I was just driving hard. What happened to me didn’t deserve a punishment, and the other two who did it clearly didn’t get one, but obviously it’s only me who get it.

“Of course the people at the front are a bit more critical, but I don’t understand that for me.” The 24-year-old added: “I think on my part, which is unfair.” [is] that I am treated differently than other drivers. “

Close: Verstappen has been criticized for his wheel-to-wheel battles with Lewis in Saudi Arabia

Close: Verstappen has been criticized for his wheel-to-wheel battles with Lewis in Saudi Arabia

Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin unveils Orbital Reef personal area station

WASHINGTON – Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin announced on Monday its plan for a private space station called “Orbital Reef”, which is to be built in collaboration with several space companies and is expected to be deployed between 2025 and 2030.

Blue Origin describes the Orbital Reef station, which would be habitable for up to 10 people, as a “mixed-use business park” in space – as well as “exotic hospitality” for space tourists.

Orbital Reef is designed to have almost as much habitable volume as the International Space Station.

The company’s primary partner for the station is Sierra Space, a subsidiary of aerospace company Sierra Nevada Corporation Boeing, Redwire room and Genesis Engineering.

“We are only just beginning to understand the enormous impact microgravity research, development and manufacturing can have, not just on universe exploration and discovery, but also on improving life on earth,” said Mike Gold, executive vice President of Redwire, opposite CNBC.

Redwire Space’s shares were temporarily held on the New York Stock Exchange after rising following the announcement. The stock rose as much as 40% in trading but gave up most of the gains and ended the day 8% higher at $ 13.14.

A rendering of the space station “Ocean Reef” in orbit.

Blue origin

Blue Origin will provide the “utility systems” and “core modules” of the space station and plans to launch Orbital Reef with its New Glenn rocket.

Sierra Space is contributing its LIFE (Large Integrated Flexible Environment; essentially an inflatable space station module) and plans to use its Dream Chaser spacecraft to transport cargo and crew to and from the station.

Redwire room, which went public in September, will carry out the station’s payload operations and build operational structures. Redwire also plans to use Orbital Reef for microgravity research, development and manufacturing.

Boeing will build Orbital Reef’s science-based module and operate the station and perform maintenance engineering. The aerospace giant also plans to use it his Starliner capsule for the transport of crew and cargo to the station.

Genesis Engineering will bring in its “Single Person Spacecraft” system, which the company is calling as an alternative to a spacesuit.

In a conference call with reporters, executives from the team’s companies declined to reveal how much each of them would like to invest in Orbital Reef.

Blue Origin Vice President Brent Sherwood said the team will not give a “specific number” on how much the Orbital Reef space station will cost, adding that the financial numbers are commercially sensitive.

Bezos’ company has been considering building a space station for more than a year since CNBC previously reported, and added a number of job postings for his Orbital Destinations team earlier this month.

Bezos’ vision: living and working in space

Founder, Chairman, CEO and President of Amazon Jeff Bezos speaks during an event about Blue Origin’s space exploration plans in Washington, the United States, on May 9, 2019.

Clodagh Kilcoyne | Reuters

The space station race is heating up

Blue Origin intends to compete for one of NASA’s anticipated contracts for the Commercial LEO Destinations program, but Bezos’ company is not alone. NASA’s director of commercial space, Phil McAlister, told CNBC last month that the program had received “about a dozen proposals” from a variety of companies for contracts.

With NASA planning to decommission the International Space Station by the end of the decade, the CLD program represents an attempt to turn to private companies for new space stations – with the space agency expecting to save more than $ 1 billion annually.

“We are in a second golden age in space exploration and development,” said Redwire’s Gold.

Last week, another private space station was announced by a separate team of companies: Nanoracks, Voyager Space, and Lockheed Martin are building a station called Starlab, which is scheduled to go into operation by 2027.

Starlab is to be manned by up to four astronauts, which corresponds to about a third of the volume of the ISS.

Concept drawing of a space station “Starlab”

Nanoracks

NASA has already started funding a company’s ambitions under a separate contract from the CLD program after Axiom Space with $ 140 million. Axiom plans to build modules that will be connected to the ISS. When the ISS retired, Axiom would then dismantle its modules and turn it into a free-flying space station.

An illustration of three of the company’s modules connected to the International Space Station.

Axiom space

Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin launches William Shatner to house and again

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Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin launched its New Shepard rocket for the fifth time this year on Wednesday, and Canadian actor William Shatner joined the company’s second manned spaceflight to date.

This New Shepard mission, called NS-18, led a crew of four: Shatner, Blue Origin VP of Mission and Flight Operations Audrey Powers, Planet Labs co-founder Chris Boshuizen, and Medidata co-founder Glen de Vries.

It took off at about 10:50 a.m. ET.

The crew of NS-18, from left: Audrey Powers, William Shatner, Dr. Chris Boshuizen and Glen de Vries.

Blue origin

Shatner, who played Captain Kirk in the original television series “Star Trek”, is 90 years old and the oldest person to fly into space, starting with a crew in July.

The rocket launched from Blue Origin’s private facility in West Texas and reached over 100,000 kilometers (or more than 340,000 feet in altitude) before safely returning to Earth a few minutes later. The start took about 11 minutes from start to finish. The crew experienced weightlessness for about three minutes.

Star Trek actor William Shatner, along with former NASA engineer Chris Boshuizen, clinical research entrepreneur Glen de Vries, and Blue Origin Vice President and Engineer Audrey Powers receives NS-18 from Blue prior to their suborbital flight on New Shepard’s NS-18 mission Origin near Van Horn, Texas, USA in a still from a video broadcast on October 13, 2021.

Blue origin | Reuters

The New Shepard capsule accelerated to more than three times the speed of sound to exceed the 80-kilometer (about 50 miles) limit that the U.S. uses to mark the edge of space. The capsule will be flown autonomously without a human pilot and returned under a set of parachutes for landing in the Texas desert.

The New Shepard rocket booster is also reusable and landed on a concrete platform near the launch site. NS-18 was the fourth take-off and landing for this booster.

The company also flies New Shepard for cargo missions, as in Augustcarrying research payloads in the capsule.

The NS-18 crew returns in the New Shepard capsule.

Blue origin

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Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin: Essay claims ‘poisonous’ office

Jeff Bezos

Elif Öztürk | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

According to an article published Thursday, 21 current and former employees of Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin claim the space company is a “toxic” place to work.

Led by former Blue Origin Head of Employee Communications, Alexandra Abrams, the paper claims that the The company urges workers to sign strict nondisclosure agreements, suppresses internal feedback, ignores safety concerns, and creates a sexist environment for women. There were also examples of alleged sexual harassment.

“I’m far enough from that that I’m not afraid to silence myself about them,” Abrams said in a CBS interview that aired Thursday.

The essay was posted on the Lioness website on Thursday. It was signed by Abrams and said it was endorsed by 20 other current and former employees whose names were not listed.

In response to CNBC’s request for comment, Linda Mills, Blue Origin’s vice president of communications, said Abrams was “dismissed for cause” in 2019 “after repeated warnings about issues related to federal export control regulations.”

In response to Blue Origin, Abrams said in a statement to CNBC that it has “never received any verbal or written warnings from management regarding issues related to federal export control regulations.”

Abrams admitted in the CBS interview that she was fired from Blue Origin. She told CBS Mornings that she was “shocked” when she was fired, but her manager said, “Bob and I can no longer trust you,” referring to CEO Bob Smith. According to her LinkedIn account, she now works in employee communications for a large software company.

Alleged sexism and harassment

The essay stated that “gender gaps are common among the aerospace workforce,” but claimed that “they are also manifested in a certain type of sexism at Blue Origin”.

There were two examples from the management level. It was alleged that a “senior executive in the loyal inner circle of CEO Bob Smith” has been repeatedly reported to the company’s human resources department on allegations of sexual harassment. Despite the allegations, the essay states that Smith made the executive a member of Blue Origin’s recruitment committee when the company was in a senior human resources role.

In the second example, a former executive is said to have humiliated women, “called them ‘Baby Girl’, ‘Baby Doll’ or ‘Sweetheart’ and asked about their dating life.” The essay claims that Blue Origin would warn new female employees not to stay away from the executive who allegedly had a “close personal relationship with Bezos.”

“He physically groped a female subordinate so that he could finally be released,” claims the essay.

Mills said in her statement that “Blue Origin has no tolerance for discrimination or harassment of any kind”.

“We are offering a variety of options to our employees, including a 24/7 anonymous hotline, and will promptly investigate any new allegations of misconduct,” added Mills.

Blue Origin is headquartered in Kent, Washington.

Blue origin

Blue Origin has also stepped up its use of strict nondisclosure agreements, the article said, and in 2019 urged all employees to sign new contracts with a non-degradation clause, both current and former employees asserted. The letter quoted a senior program director with decades in the aerospace and defense industries who claimed that “working at Blue Origin was the worst experience of my life.”

FAA is investigating security allegations

Safety concerns are another important part of the essay, which claims that “some of the engineers who keep the missiles safe” have either been ousted or paid off after internal criticism.

The paper said that last year Blue Origin’s leadership showed “increasing impatience” with the low airspeed of its suborbital New Shepard rocket, and said the company’s team had to go from “a few flights a year … to more.” than 40 “jump.

“When Jeff Bezos went into space this July, we didn’t share his enthusiasm. Instead, many of us watched with overwhelming discomfort. Some of us couldn’t stand it at all, ”the essay says. “Competing with fellow billionaires – and ‘making progress for Jeff’ – seemed to take precedence over security concerns that would have slowed the schedule.”

The Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement to CNBC Thursday that it is reviewing the safety concerns expressed in the essay.

“The FAA takes every security allegation seriously,” the regulator said in a statement.

The paper claims that environmental concerns were a minor concern at the company, with implications for local ecology and required permits after “the machines showed up” at Blue Origin’s Kent, Washington, facility.

Additionally, Blue Origin’s Kent headquarters – which opened last year – is not a LEED certified building, according to the essay, and claims that it was “built on wetlands drained for construction”.

Blue Origin’s Mills’ statement to CNBC did not address these other issues.

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How Blue Origin, SpaceX, Virgin Galactic house race might influence the ambiance

Billionaire businessman Jeff Bezos will launch with three crew members aboard a New Shepard rocket on the world’s first unattended suborbital flight from Blue Origin Launch Site 1 near Van Horn, Texas on July 20, 2021.

Joe Skipper | Reuters

The space industry is taking off after decades of stagnation.

Driven primarily by the rapidly evolving space programs of Elon Musk’s SpaceX and China, the world experienced 114 orbital launches in 2018 – the first three-digit number since 1990. This year, the orbital launches are slated to be for the first time since the 1970s. And that count doesn’t include Jeff Bezos’ most recent suborbital tourism trips Blue origin and Richard Bransons Virgo galactic.

Between planning NASA Moon return, SpaceX is constructing a massive “mega-constellation” of Internet satellite, China Crew of a space station and suborbital companies sending crews of tourists to the edge of space, launches could soon be the order of the day.

But will the new space boom have its price on the planet?

“While we obviously need space launches and satellites, when you think about things like space tourism, you think about the environmental impact,” says Ian Whittaker, lecturer in space physics at Nottingham Trent University in the UK

Researchers are trying to figure out how the Earth might respond to stronger clouds of smoke from rocket exhaust by examining the total mix of carbon dioxide, soot, alumina, and other particles that are collectively emitted by a spreading variety of rockets.

So far, the fledgling space industry is not seriously threatening the environment and likely has room for growth. However, it is unclear whether that will change as the new space race accelerates.

“I don’t think we know enough at this point to pinpoint exactly what this future should look like,” said Martin Ross, atmospheric researcher at The Aerospace Corp. “We just don’t have this information yet.”

Effects on carbon dioxide and climate change

As the world grapples with the move away from fossil fuels, the rise of a new industry – especially one with huge clouds bubbling out from powerful engines – could seem unsettling.

Most rockets emit more planet-warming carbon than many airplanes. A few minutes of weightlessness on the Virgin Galactic spacecraft will leave a carbon footprint comparable to flying business class across the Atlantic, and an orbital launch of SpaceX’s upcoming fully reusable spacecraft will emit as much carbon dioxide as one continuously flying an aircraft for about three years, according to a back-of-the-envelope calculation by Whittaker.

A spokesman for Virgin Galactic said the company is “exploring ways to offset carbon emissions for future customer flights.” While SpaceX did not comment directly on CO2 emissions, musk Has supports a CO2 tax Politics. Blue Origin has said its New Shepard missile uses carbon-free fuels like hydrogen and oxygen.

But there are far more commercial airplane flights than space launches – 39 million against 114 in 2018 – too many for the space industry to catch up in even the most ambitious of scenarios. Today missiles burn collectively approx. 0.1% as much fuel as airplanes, which makes their CO2 emissions compared to a rounding error.

Whittaker points out, however, that such calculations neglect the unknown, but likely substantial, carbon footprint of producing, transporting, and cooling the tons of fuel used in space launches

“While it doesn’t coincide with aviation, it’s still a great add-on,” he says.

To achieve carbon neutrality, he hopes the industry will follow Blue Origin’s lead and use carbon-free fuels as well as greener operations by producing fuel locally from renewable energy sources.

What missiles leave in the atmosphere

“If CO2 isn’t in the action, it’s the particles,” says Ross, who has spent decades studying the environmental impact of takeoffs.

The glowing flames that shoot out of a rocket’s engines indicate that when the vehicle burns, soot is produced, technically known as “black carbon”. Any rocket that burns carbon-based fuels like kerosene or methane injects these particles directly into the upper reaches of the atmosphere, where they are likely to circulate for four to five years.

There the growing layer of soot looks like a fine black umbrella. It absorbs solar radiation and effectively prevents sunlight from reaching the surface of the planet, similar to what is suggested Geoengineering schemes intends to temporarily cool the earth might work. Shiny alumina particles emitted by the solid rocket engines of NASA’s upcoming Space Launch System and China’s Long March 11 vehicle make the phenomenon worse by reflecting sunlight.

The effects of this unintended experiment are unknown – except that they could be significant. A simple simulation found by Ross and a colleague in 2014 that the primary cooling effect of dozens of rocket launches is already equivalent to the warming effect of carbon dioxide released by millions of commercial flights.

That’s not to say that the aerospace industry is offsetting the environmental impact of flying. Infusing the atmosphere with novel particles has complex effects, says Ross. For example, their rough model showed that rocket launches cooled some locations by 0.5 degrees Celsius, while they heated the Arctic by more than 1 degree Celsius. And the simulation didn’t try to include side effects, such as whether takeoffs would create clouds or kill. More sophisticated modeling could show that exhaust particulate matter exacerbates overall warming, says Ross.

Other emissions and ozone

Space launches also worry some researchers because rockets emit their exhaust gases directly into the stratosphere, home to the protective ozone layer that blocks harmful ultraviolet light.

Most solid rocket engines emit alumina particles and chlorine gas, which promote chemical reactions that break down ozone into molecular oxygen. SpaceX and Blue Origin have switched to liquid fuels, which are typically less harmful but still contain by-products, including water vapor and nitrogen oxides, which can break down ozone during the years they circulate in the upper atmosphere.

“They’re not harmless,” says Eloise Marais, an atmospheric researcher at University College London. “They have an impact on the atmosphere.”

Marais is working on a prediction of how the current portfolio of rocket fuels could thin the ozone layer in the not too distant future. She has explored the impact of current launches and a speculative scenario where space tourism is proving popular and reliable enough to support a few suborbital launches a day and an orbital launch every week.

The calculations need to be reviewed before release, Marais says, but preliminary results suggest that while today’s launches have little impact on ozone, a booming space tourism industry could begin to change that.

“The effect is big enough that we could worry if the industry grew beyond what we speculate,” she says.

How often the companies will start in the future remains uncertain. Virgin Galactic says it hopes to operate at some point 400 flights per year. SpaceX introduces itself Passengers with spaceship shuttle between major cities in less than an hour, competing with commercial airlines.

Balancing space advances with environmental concerns

Access to space has revolutionized weather forecasting, communications technology, and researchers’ ability to understand how human activities have changed the Earth’s climate. It has also enabled space-based facilities like the International Space Station and a fleet of space telescopes to conduct transformative basic research.

In the future, a thriving space industry could create practical projects from clean, space-based solar energy to Asteroid mining, as well as the search for life in the solar system and other scientific endeavors.

Researchers like Ross don’t want to stop this progress. Rather, they hope to make this possible by identifying potential environmental problems early on. Today’s embryonic space industry is largely harmless, and Ross suggests that an environmental research program could help keep it that way even at maturity.

Stratospheric aircraft could scan rocket clouds directly to learn exactly what they are spewing out, while satellites and ground-based observatories monitor the atmosphere for short-, medium- and long-term effects of take-offs. There is also the unknown effects of obsolete satellites “burning up” and throwing tons of metal particles into the upper atmosphere. Supercomputers could run extensive simulations to determine what levels and types of space activity can be safely conducted.

“We want to avoid a surprising future,” says Ross. “We would like to say that the space industry can now move forward sustainably.”

Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin shedding high expertise throughout NASA lander battle

Jeff Bezos, owner of Blue Origin, unveils a new lunar module called the Blue Moon during an event at the Washington Convention Center on May 9, 2019 in Washington, DC.

Mark Wilson | Getty Images

Jeff Bezos flew into space late last month, but his company has lost top talent since the billionaire space founder returned to Earth.

At least 17 key executives and senior engineers left Blue Origin this summer, CNBC learned, and many will follow suit in the weeks to Bezos’ space travel.

Two of the engineers, Nitin Arora and Lauren Lyons, have announced jobs at other space companies this week: Elon Musks SpaceX and Firefly aerospace, respectively.

Others have been quietly updating their LinkedIn pages over the past few weeks.

Any unannounced departure has been confirmed to CNBC by people familiar with the matter. Those departures include: Steve Bennett, Senior Vice President of New Shepard, Jeff Ashby, Head of Mission Assurance (who has retired), Scott Jacobs, Sales Director for National Security, Bob Ess, Senior Director of New Glenn, Tod Byquist , Senior Director of the First Tier of New Glenn, Senior Finance of New Glenn Manager Bill Scammell, Senior Manager of Production Testing Christopher Payne, New Shepard Technical Project Manager Nate Chapman, Senior Propulsion Design Engineer Dave Sanderson, Senior HLS Human Factors Engineer Rachel Forman, BE-4 Controller Lead Integration and Testing Engineer Jack Nelson, New Shepard Lead Avionics Software Engineer Huong Vo, BE-7 Avionics Hardware Engineer Aaron Wang, Propulsion Engineer Rex Gu, and Rocket Engine Development Engineer Gerry Hudak.

Those who announced they were leaving Blue Origin didn’t say why, but frustration with management and a slow, bureaucratic structure are often cited in employee reviews on the Glassdoor job site.

A company spokesperson highlighted Blue Origin’s growth in a statement to CNBC.

“Blue Origin grew by 850 employees in 2020 and we have grown another 650 in 2021 so far. In fact, we’ve almost quadrupled in the past three years. We continue to occupy important management positions in manufacturing. , Quality, engine design and vehicle design. We are building a team and we have great talent, “said the spokesman.

Some of the retired engineers were part of Blue Origin’s astronaut lunar lander program. Bezos’ company lost its bid for a valuable NASA development contract in April when SpaceX was announced as the only award winner under the Space Agency’s Human Landing System program, receiving a $ 2.9 billion contract.

But even though the Government Accountability Office last month rejected Blue Origin’s protest against NASA’s decision, the company has further escalated its fight to participate in the HLS program. Blue Origin launched for the first time a PR offensive against SpaceX’s Starship Missile and then NASA sued in federal court on Monday.

A $ 10,000 bonus

Jeff Bezos pops champagne after emerging from the New Shepard capsule after his space flight on July 20, 2021.

Blue origin

The company has nearly 4,000 employees in the United States, with headquarters in Kent, Washington, near Seattle, and offices in Cape Canaveral, Florida; Van Horn, Texas; and Huntsville, Alabama.

Ten days after Bezos’ space flight on July 20, Blue Origin gave all of its full-time employees an unconditional cash bonus of $ 10,000, several people familiar with the situation told CNBC. None of Blue Origin’s contractors received it. The company confirmed the bonus, with a spokesperson saying it was intended as a “thank you” for reaching the milestone of getting humans into space.

Two people told CNBC that the bonus was perceived internally as an attempt by corporate management to persuade talent to stay in response to the number of employees who filed resignations after the introduction.

A look at Glassdoor reveals a marked difference in employee satisfaction with the leadership of Blue Origin compared to that of other leading space companies. According to Glassdoor, only 15% of Blue Origin employees approve of CEO Bob Smith – up from 91% for Elon Musk at SpaceX or 77% for Tory Bruno at the United Launch Alliance.

The HLS fight

A model of the crew lander at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in August 2020.

Blue origin

NASA’s Human Landing System program is one of the critical parts of the agency’s plan, known as Artemis, to return US astronauts to the lunar surface.

Last year NASA awarded nearly $ 1 billion in concept development contracts for HLS – SpaceX received $ 135 million, Read‘Subsidiary Dynetics receives $ 253 million and Blue Origin receives $ 579 million. The space agency then expected to award two of these three companies for hardware development contracts this year. However, after a lack of requested funding for HLS from Congress, NASA decided to only give SpaceX a contract worth about $ 2.9 billion.

Blue Origin and Dynetics each quickly filed protests with the US Government Accountability Office, which stopped NASA’s work on the program until the protests could be resolved. GAO confirmed NASA’s decision on July 30th. On August 16, Blue Origin went one step further, sue NASA in federal court.

NASA has paid $ 300 million of its SpaceX contract to date, with payment being made on the day GAO declined to protest. However, the space agency’s work on HLS has again been suspended – this time due to Blue Origin’s lawsuit, according to court records on Thursday – and will not resume until November 1.

Big delays

Billionaire businessman Jeff Bezos will launch with three crew members aboard a New Shepard missile on the world’s first unattended suborbital flight from Blue Origin Launch Site 1 near Van Horn, Texas on July 20, 2021.

Joe Skipper | Reuters

Blue Origin has struggled to execute several large programs since Bezos hired Smith as CEO in 2017. Bezos founded the company in 2000 with the aim of “creating a future where millions of people in space live and work to help the earth”. Delays – although common in the industry where the adage “space is tough” is persistently heard – have pushed Bezos’ vision back. highlighted by the departure of Blue Origin’s Chief Operating Officer late last year.

Bezos launched to the edge of space as one of the members of the first crew aboard the reusable New Shepard rocket. Although the company didn’t disclose pricing, New Shepard is competing with it Virgo galactic in suborbital space tourism, with Blue Origin selling nearly $ 100 million worth of tickets for future passenger flights. Although New Shepard’s first crewed launch was a resounding success, Blue Origin leadership had previously expected the rocket to begin human launching by the end of 2017.

An artist’s illustration of a New Glenn rocket on the launch pad in Florida.

Blue origin

BE-4 engine test at Blue Origin launch facility in West Texas.

Blue origin

Blue Origin’s third major program is its stable rocket engine, led by the BE-4, which will propel its New Glenn rocket. The company previously said its BE-4 engines would be “ready to fly in 2017”.

However, four years later, development issues and a lack of hardware for testing mean Blue Origin has not yet shipped its first aircraft engines. ArsTechnica reports earlier this month. The company is pushing to have two BE-4 engines ready by the end of this year. BE-4s in particular are important beyond Blue Origin because ULA signed a contract to use the engines to power their Vulcan missilesPrefer Blue Origin Aerojet Rocketdyne as its supplier. ULA is pushing to have its first Vulcan rocket ready for launch by the end of this year, and Blue Origin’s BE-4 engines are expected to be one – if not the – last piece to be added before launch.

Bezos has spent most of the time focusing on over the past two decades Amazonbut on the way has steadily sold parts of its stake in the tech giant to Fund the development of Blue Origin – to the $ 1 billion a year, or possibly more. Last month, Bezos resigned as CEO of Amazon, with many in the space industry expecting him to focus more on his space business.

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Authorities denies Bezos’ Blue Origin protest over NASA HLS contract

Jeff Bezos, owner of Blue Origin, unveils a new lunar module called the Blue Moon during an event at the Washington Convention Center on May 9, 2019 in Washington, DC.

Mark Wilson | Getty Images

The US government accountability office on Friday rejected protests from companies affiliated with it Jeff Bezos that NASA has wrongly awarded a lucrative lunar lander contract exclusively to astronauts Elon Musks SpaceX.

The complaints were filed by Jeff Bezos ‘Blue Origin and Leidos’ subsidiary Dynetics.

“NASA did not violate public procurement laws or regulations when it decided to award only one award … the evaluation of all three proposals was reasonable and in line with applicable public procurement laws, regulations and the terms of the announcement,” said Kenneth. , Managing Associate General Counsel of GAO Patton wrote in a statement.

The GAO ruling supports the Space Agency’s surprise announcement in April that NASA has placed an order with SpaceX valued at approximately $ 2.9 billion. SpaceX was likely to compete with Blue Origin and Dynetics for two contracts before NASA awarded a single contract due to a lower allocation to the program from Congress.

NASA, in a statement, said the GAO decision will enable the agency “to set a schedule for the first manned landing on the moon in more than 50 years”.

“As soon as possible, NASA will provide an update on the way forward for Artemis, the human landing system, and the return of mankind to the moon. We will continue to work with the Biden administration and Congress to secure funding for a robust and sustainable approach. “For the nation’s return to the moon in collaboration with US trading partners,” the US space agency said.

A spokesperson for Blue Origin told CNBC that the company still believes that “there were fundamental issues with NASA’s decision, but GAO couldn’t address it due to its limited jurisdiction.”

“We will continue to advocate two immediate vendors as we believe this is the right solution,” said Blue Origin. “The Human Landing System program must have competition now instead of later – that is the best solution for NASA and the best solution for our country.”

SpaceX and Dynetics did not respond to CNBC requests for comment. For his part, Musk commented on the GAO’s decision in a tweet with a single emoji for the flexing arm.

NASA decision

Prototype spacecraft rocket SN15 launches from Boca Chica, Texas.

SpaceX

The GAO protest ruling resolves a dispute over NASA’s Human Landing System program, one of the final key elements in the agency’s plan to return US astronauts to the lunar surface.

Prior to the recent award, NASA had placed nearly $ 1 billion in concept development contracts – SpaceX received $ 135 million, Dynetics received 253 million, and Blue Origin received $ 579 million.

When choosing SpaceX for the next round of development, NASA decided to fund a variation of SpaceX Spaceship rocket, the prototype of which SpaceX has tested at its development site in Boca Chica, Texas.

NASA plans to have their astronauts use Starship to transfer from the agency’s Orion spacecraft when the capsule reaches lunar orbit.

Protests from Blue Origin and Dynetics

Shortly after NASA’s announcement in April, Blue Origin and Dynetics each filed protests with the GAOquestioning the space agency’s process and decision.

Blue Origin condemned the award as “flawed” in April, saying NASA “moved the goal posts at the last minute”.

The company also announced that its $ 5.99 billion bid was roughly double that of SpaceX. NASA later announced that Dynetics’ bid was even higher at $ 8.5 billion.

One effect of the protests is that NASA was unable to advance work on HLS with SpaceX, with work on the program essentially being suspended pending the GAO’s decision.

Bezos’ counter

Shortly after he flew into space himself on Blue Origin’s first manned flight, Bezos wrote a letter to NASA earlier this week that he would cover up to $ 2 billion in the space agency’s cost for a lunar landing contract.

“We stand ready to help NASA moderate its technical risks and resolve its budget constraints and get the Artemis program back on a more competitive, credible and sustainable path,” Bezos wrote in the letter.

Blue Origin communications vice president Linda Mills told CNBC in an email that Bezos had “made no change to the offering” following the GAO ruling.

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Flyers land Atkinson, lower your expenses; Blue Jackets deliver again Voracek

Apparently the Flyers and Blue Jackets weren’t finished after they had already made some big trade. In the latest tradewho have favourited Flyer Cam Atkinsonwhile the Blue Jackets brought back Jakub Voracek.

Trade: Flyers get Atkinson, Blue Jackets bring Voracek back

Other trades had choices and / or perspectives to consider. At the moment it seems that this is an increasingly rare “one-on-one” deal.

It is critical that reports indicate that there was no salary deduction involved. Frank Seravalli from Daily Faceoff was among the reports that about the trade Voracek – Atkinson.

If that’s true, the gut answer is that this trade is a nice win for the Flyers. Look at their contracts:

  • Cam Atkinson, 32, carries a cap of $ 5.875 million through 2024-25 (four seasons).
  • Jake Voracek, 31, has a much larger AAV of $ 8.25 million. However, his contract expires after three seasons (2023-24). Also the difference between the two in actual salary is not as big as the Cap Hit Disparity.

These salary cap details are important because, while Voracek and Atkinson are different actors, their overall impact is comparable. They are two wingers who bring quite a bit to the table, even though they are both getting older:

Two strikers of similar caliber. Voracek is more polar with more offensive advantages while Atkinson is a great penalty killer. https://t.co/h0lnUpgM9m pic.twitter.com/BtDQWnyerC

– Evolving Hockey (@EvolvingHockey) July 24, 2021

Exchange flyers in the new look for Atkinson

Really, it’s been an off-season of change for the Flyers just by trading. (Could you have plans for the free agency, too?)

The Flyers used to give up Nolan Patrick, take a fascinating swing with Ryan Ellis. While this trade has good advantages, the flyers are play great on Rasmus Ristolainen to be better than its underlying statistics have argued.

According to the Voracek-Atkinson deal, the Flyers have about $ 12.5 million in cap space. to Cap Friendly. That space could go fast as the Flyers have important RFAs in. to have Carter Hart and Travis Sanheim. (You will probably want to invest in a replacement goalkeeper too? Maybe?)

Time will tell if the flyers are better after all of these trades. But they will certainly look different after an often deeply miserable season.

Blue jackets – Voracek reunion

In 2007 the Blue Jackets voted Jakub Voracek in seventh place overall.

We were all so much more innocent and fresher. (Photo by Getty Images)

During his first run with the Blue Jackets, Voracek played 241 games, scoring 39 goals and 134 points. We didn’t really see Voracek blossom until he was traded to the Flyers, where he became a deadly goalscorer (and increasingly looked like) Claude Giroux).

That Jeff Carter Handel didn’t just bring in the Flyers Voracek. The Flyers used the first-rounder from this deal for the design Sean Couturier.

(So, uh, the Blue Jackets could lose two Jakub Voracek is trading with the Flyers? Ouch.)

As far as we know, everyone – Voracek, Atkinson, Blue Jackets, and Flyers – could benefit from this fresh start. Like the Flyers, the 2021-22 Blue Jackets will look very different from the 2020-21 model.

The Blue Jackets were only traded a day ago Seth Jones to the Blackhawks in the mega-deal. During the trading period, they also landed major futures by selling high Nick Foligno and David Savard. Since John Tortorella is also out of town, this Columbus team looks very different.

Of all the Blue Jackets trades and changes, adding Voracek feels the least “mandatory” to Atkinson. He could, however, deliver some offensive pop in a season where this is hard to find.

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Write a line to him phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.

Why the largest job wage growth post-pandemic is blue collar

Businesses across the country are in dire need of workers as economic reopening collides with a tight labor market, but the boom in wage growth for manual workers is ahead of the pandemic.

Donna Kauffman, co-owner of a landscaping and construction company in Colleyville, Texas, said a tight labor market had raised her starting wage to $ 13.75 an hour, compared to lower wages in previous years.

Economic forecasters like Gary Shilling have seen an upward trend in wages for manual workers and manual services in recent years, growing faster than white collar wages and a trend reversal that has persisted for the past 30 years, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“In general, at the worker level, you’re likely to see higher real incomes,” Shilling recently told CNBC.

Schilling says “work share” – the amount of GDP that is paid out in wages, salaries and benefits – what was in decline has been trending upwards for decades, while the “capital share” – the amount of national income from invested capital – is trending downwards.

For workers in labor industries such as construction, transportation and manufacturing, as well as workers in manual service sectors such as hospitality, leisure, hospitality, and beauty and health services, they have seen the highest wage leaps in recent years. These wages continue to rise after the pandemic.

On July 7, 2021, in San Rafael, California, a sign reading “Now Hiring” was posted in the drive way of a McDonald’s restaurant.

Justin Sullivan | Getty Images

Gad Levanon, head of the Labor Institute at the Conference Board, said the economy will depend on the reopening of manual jobs and the recent wage hike is due to labor shortages in these industries as the country continues to grapple with the aftermath of the ongoing pandemic.

The June Non-Agricultural Payroll Report showed a rise Average hourly wages in all industries, with employment growth of 343,000 in leisure and hospitality professions, more than half of which are in the hospitality industry. But employment in areas such as construction, transportation and manufacturing remained low.

Levanon says that despite the rise in wages, it is taking longer to find workers in these industries as these positions are usually filled with workers from lower socioeconomic status who are still affected by the pandemic. These jobs require personal interaction and practical skills that pose potential health risks to workers, and many of these workers will either not return to their jobs or will not be able to return to work due to factors such as lack of access to childcare and continued state unemployment benefits.

The discussion about why workers do not return to work remains highly controversial. Some say unemployment benefits deter workers, others say Advantages don’t matter. Some say rising vaccination rates will encourage workers to come back, but others say the risks for vulnerable populations are still high.

Zoom In Icon Arrows pointing outwards

US Bureau of Labor Statistics

Some experts consider the wage increases to be here to stayand it is up to companies to compensate for labor costs when more workers return.

“America is first and foremost a service economy,” said Daniel Zhao, Senior Economist at Glassdoor. “So with the economy reopening, I expect greater demand for personal services, and this will add to the coming boom in service roles and work.”

Sportswear company Under armor increases his Minimum hourly wage for its retail and sales reps from $ 10-15, while restaurants like MC Donalds and Chipotle are increase their wages, and in April the White house increased the minimum wage to $ 15 for government contractors, including jobs for construction workers and mechanics.

Zhao says when companies like McDonald’s and Chipotle raise their minimum wages, it means they are realizing it Labor shortages and wage inflation as long-term problems.

“If they only perceived this as a temporary pandemic lack of time, they would only be relying on one-time bonuses or recruitment bonuses,” Zhao said. “But the fact that they are raising wages shows that there are employers who believe the recruitment challenges will continue for a long time.”

Workers willing to do manual work are falling

While every industry is currently suffering from work constraints, Kauffman said she has seen a steady decline in workers willing to do practical work over the past 20 years.

44 percent of the companies currently have vacancies for skilled workers, see above a June poll by the National Federation of Independent Business, and 66% of construction companies said they were not hiring enough skilled or skilled workers.

One reason workers aren’t returning to these jobs quickly is because of their bargaining power, says Gregory Daco, chief US economist at Oxford Economics. Employers must continue to meet higher wage and employment requirements in order to attract this workforce back.

A member of the Ironworkers Local 7 union installs steel beams on a skyscraper under construction during a summer heatwave in Boston, Massachusetts on June 30, 2021.

Brian Snyder | Reuters

The labor market for manual activities has been shrinking since the years leading up to the pandemic, according to Levanon, as older generations retire and there are fewer people doing these jobs. This trend will continue in the years to come.

“Retired baby boomers are people with lower education who do these worker and manual service jobs,” Levanon said. “And the majority of the younger generation it replaces are better educated and less willing to work in such professions.”

Kauffman said her landscaping company used to hire young adults, either high school students or out-of-college young adults, but gradually as high schools in her area started pushing college for more students and ending agricultural education programs, she has potential workers lost.

Daco says that while workers’ desire to perform these roles is an issue, there are more direct reasons for labor shortages and wage increases in both manual and manual service occupations. On average, there are enough people to do these jobs, he says, given the 6.4 million people who are not currently working but want a job, according to the June payroll report.

Skills shortages and job shortages in the place of residence of workers contribute to recruitment difficulties.

“They have workers, but they may not be in the right place at the right time,” said Daco. “Perhaps there are rural areas where people have to work in services, leisure or hospitality, but fewer people want to live there.”

Infrastructure spending can drive wages higher

While the debate in Congress and the White House over a draft federal spending and infrastructure bill continues, bipartisan support for strengthening physical infrastructure across the country, including adding and expanding roads, bridges, and highways, should meet the demand for workers and wages keep high pressure on employers.

The details of any specific plan passed by Congress are crucial, but Levanon says companies will continue to face extremely difficult recruitment barriers for construction workers and manual workers.

As federal spending plans become clearer, Daco expects increased pressure to fill these positions, which will drive wages higher, but not suddenly. He predicts a more gradual increase towards mid-2022 when infrastructure plans become a reality. And while current wages represent a starting point for the future, he does not see this as a starting point for a sustained surge in the wage boom for workers.

“I don’t think this is the start of wage inflation as wages will continue to rise at the same rate as they are indefinitely,” he said.

—MacKenzie Sigalos of CNBC contributed to this report