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Blue Origin's 17th New Shepard Mission Is a Success

Blue Origin's 17th New Shepard Mission Is a Success Blue Origin's 17th New Shepard Mission Is a Success

The Kent’s Blue Origin has accomplished yet another milestone in a form of the 17th New Shepard Mission where the spacecraft successfully took a trip to space and returned for the program. As per the insights, it’s the eighth consecutive flight of this specific spacecraft to space. The spacecraft is the same one used for the first suborbital mission since founder Jeff Bezos and three crewmates reached a height of 66 miles last month. The Blue Origin's New Shepard booster was launched from West Texas on Thursday. This expedition, however, did not carry any humans on board. However, an array of research payloads, including some for NASA’s, were sent into space by the single-stage New Shepard rocket, which was launched last Thursday.

With 110,000 pounds of force, the BE-3 rocket engine pushed the New Shepard booster into space. On top of the rocket was a crew capsule, which had no humans. The crew capsule was later detached from the New Shepard rocket after achieving a maximum speed (2,229 miles per hour) after firing for more than two minutes. As the capsule descended, it reached a height of more than 105.6 kilometers over the internationally accepted border of space. Before landing, the booster activated air brakes and re-ignited its BE-3 engine to slow down. On Blue Origin's enormous 80,000-acre test facility's desert floor, the crew capsule released three primary parachutes and fired its own tiny retrorockets.

In addition to commercial payloads, the Aug. 26 trip contained a second flight of the Deorbit, Descent, and Landing (DDL) Sensor Demonstration, according to Blue Origin. When it flew for the second time, mounted on the exterior of New Shepard's rocket booster, the DDL demonstration, exhibited a technique meant to accomplish high precision landings on the lunar surface. This will allow space travel enthusiasts a long-term exploration of the moon.

Also of note were two flights of the OSCAR Trash to the Gas payload, which tested the efficiency of converting garbage into usable gases. The University of Florida's third flight of the "Biological Imaging in Support of Suborbital Sciences," assessed the accuracy of data gathering for biological studies; and Suborbital Triptych. In the crew capsule, Ghanaian artist Amoako Boafo painted three of the capsule's external panels respectively.

In the previous flight of the same spacecraft, Blue Origin carried Jeff Bezos, his brother, Wally Funk, and Oliver Daemen into suborbital space, marking the company's historic first-ever human trip. This time, it's carrying a NASA payload that will test technology, used to create a human landing mechanism for future missions to the moon. As per the insights, the payload of NASA on board is to test a Doppler lidar sensor array for future lunar landing vehicles, as well as a Descent Landing Computer for analyzing sensor data. Blue Origin tested this system in October of last year (2020), and modifications have already been made based on the results of that test, which have been included in this version.

A variety of additional experiments, both from NASA and from academic institutions such as the University of Florida, are also carried onboard at the Blue Origin spacecraft. Based on the mission’s launch, an initial take-off is followed by separation of the capsule, a controlled power landing for the booster, and finally parachute-assisted landing for the capsule after a few minutes spent in space tourism.

Back in 2018, NASA and Blue Origin signed a $3 million deal to fly terrain relative navigation, navigation doppler lidar, and other altimetry devices on New Shepard flights. It was decided before the takeoff that this flight will assist a navigating Doppler lidar and a terrain relative navigation camera mounted to the upper section of the New Shepard booster. Data from sensors would be sent to a navigation computer on a lunar landing mission to provide information about the spacecraft's location and speed.

After testing the same spacecraft several times, now the company has decided to open the spacecraft for space tourism for the public. Therefore, Future New Shepard missions are now available to paid space tourists and scientists. However, the price per seat has not been made public.

References: 

https://www.kentreporter.com/news/kents-blue-origin-successfully-completes-17th-new-shepard-mission/

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Last modified on Wednesday, 08 September 2021 00:03
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My name is Georgios Gregoriadis. I am an experienced physicist with a strong background in Astronomy. I graduated from the University of Ioannina in 2002. I am a private teacher and owner of this website.

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