Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin to announce plans for moon mission

Billionaire Jeff Bezos to unveil plans for moon presence, sources say

Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos and his space company, Blue Origin, are set to make an announcement Thursday afternoon but what the big news will be is being kept under wraps until the reveal.

"This is an incredible vehicle, and it's going to the moon", Bezos said at an event in Washington, DC on Thursday afternoon.

He added that Blue Origin can help NASA meet its new timeline with its Blue Moon lander "only because we started this three years ago".

The Blue Moon lander that Bezos revealed today is created to carry infrastructure payloads to the moon, not people.

Astronauts and other space luminaries sat in the audience under blue-tinted lighting before Mr. Bezos unveiled the boxy ship with four long and spindly landing legs. It will be capable of carrying scientific instruments and also rovers for humans. It's powered by liquid hydrogen, in part so it can be refuel from ice water on the moon's poles.

Bezos says: "It's time to go back to the moon".

The Trump administration wants USA astronauts back on the moon within five years, which is a goal Bezos has got behind. The space agency recently updated its space-exploration plans at the behest of Vice President Mike Pence and President Donald Trump.

At his presentation, Bezos unveiled a model of one of the proposed rovers, roughly the size of a golf cart, and presented a new rocket engine called BE-7, which can blast 10,000 pounds (4,535 kg) of thrust.

USA trio shares PGA lead with McIlroy, Rose lurking
Homa grabbed the lead for good when Dahmen bogeyed No. 9, breaking a tie that had lasted for much of the front nine. Fans serenaded him with "Happy Birthday" a few times . "Golf, it's a amusing game and these things happen".

In March, the Trump administration announced that it meant to return U.S. astronauts to the Moon by the end of 2024.

The first successful moon landing was by the Soviet Union in 1966 with Luna 9, followed by the US four months later. Blue's two-stage orbital rocket, dubbed New Glenn, isn't scheduled for launch until 2021.

"We were given a gift - this nearby body called the moon", Bezos said.

A site near the south pole of the Moon was named after Shackleton - a crater with rims that are exposed to nearly continual sunlight.

The aim is for Blue Moon to land on the south pole of the Moon, where ice deposits have been found in craters.

Bezos, who also owns The Washington Post, did not talk to journalists at the event.

His vision is shared by competing billionaire-backed private space ventures like Elon Musk's SpaceX and aerospace incumbents like United Launch Alliance, a partnership between Boeing Co and Lockheed Martin.

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