Amazon founder Jeff Bezos this Monday offered NASA to take over the $ 2,000 million payment in exchange for a contract for his company Blue Origin to build a landing with which he could return to the Moon, as well. the one that the US space agency awarded this year to competitor SpaceX.
Bezos, in an open letter to NASA Director Bill Nelson, criticized that decision harshly, considering that the entire project in the hands of one company and not two would be problematic if the agency’s original intent.
“NASA must focus on its original competition strategy,” defended the businessman, who assured that without the agency soon finding him with “limited options when trying to negotiate deadlines, design changes and cost overruns.”
In April, NASA announced the price of a $ 2.89 billion contract to SpaceX with the goal of returning astronauts to the moon in 2024 as part of the Artemis program.
Problems with budget
Tesla founder Elon Musk’s space company defeated Blue Origin and other companies in hopes of winning the tender for Artemis’ so-called Human Landing System (HLS).
According to special media, NASA’s decision to bet on one company was mainly due to budget problems; and Bezos now offers to cover part of the cost of the Blue Origin project, which was more expensive than SpaceX’s, if it also participates.
Bezos said his company would cover up to $ 2 billion in this and the next two fiscal years, that it would finance the development of other parts needed for the monthly mission on its own, and that it would accept a contract with a price tag of beforehand, which would prevent any kind of nuisance for NASA.
“I think this mission is important. It is an honor for me to offer these contributions and I am grateful to be in a financial position that allows me, “said the billionaire, who insisted that NASA deviate from its initial plan to launch two competing companies for have the project budgeted for reasons and that this offer solves that problem.
Bezos, the richest man on the planet, last week fulfilled his dream of reaching space after taking off from a base in West Texas (USA) aboard the New Shepard rocket, with which he traveled 106 kilometers (65 miles) high and then came up. back to Earth, in a journey of about 11 minutes.