Successful recovery of Falcon 9 booster during CRS-10 mission. Credit Flickr. Courtesy of SpaceX who has placed their photos in the public domain.
Found an article that summarizes accomplishments and plans for SpaceX and Blue Origin, the space exploration companies of Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos, respectively.
Check out Mike Wall at Space.com on 3/13/17: To the Moon! The Musk-Bezos Billionaire Space Rivalry Just Reached New Heights.
Here are many of the key achievements and targets for both companies. I sorted and regrouped the items that drew my interest. As you consider the list, you can see both companies are making rapid progress. The competition is getting serious.
By the way, if the Space.com article and my little summary here does not satisfy your appetite for learning what is going on in space, you really, really need to check out Capitalism in Space: Private Enterprise and Competition Reshape the Global Aerospace Launch Industry, by Robert Zimmerman, available in PDF format for free at Behind the Black. I am about half way through the paper. It is superb.
- 12/15 – successfully recover Falcon 9
- Through 3/17 – have now successfully recovered a Falcon 9 lift vehicle eight times; 3 on land and 5 on drone ships at sea
- 3/17 – planned first time reuse of Falcon 9 for launch of SES 10 satellite
- 11/15 – successfully recover New Shepard
- Late 2016 – retired a New Shepard booster after it was successfully recovered 4 times
Successful recovery of New Shepard booster on June 19, 2016. Credit Blue Origin.