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Blue Origin Signs Cooperative Agreement for US Military’s Rocket Cargo Program

Blue Origin

Blue Origin Signs Cooperative Agreement for US Military’s Rocket Cargo Program

The U.S. Transportation Command has signed a cooperative research and development agreement with Blue Origin to explore the possibility of using rockets for cargo transport.

The CRADA will require Blue Origin to share information about their products and capabilities to inform the rocket cargo program led by the Air Force Research Laboratory and the U.S. Space Force, SpaceNews reported.

One of four projects under the AFRL’s Vanguard Program, rocket cargo is aimed at analyzing the military utility, performance and cost of transporting loads on commercial rockets and air-dropping cargo payloads.

“Not every operation will call for logistics through space, but when we need to respond faster, or assure access in challenging environments, we recognize that space now offers a toolkit, not just a concept,” said Vice Adm. Dee Mewbourne, deputy commander of USTRANSCOM.

USTRANSCOM also signed a CRADA for the rocket cargo program with SpaceX and Exploration Architecture Corp. in 2020.

The agreement with the Elon Musk-led company focuses on evaluating the use of SpaceX’s commercial space transportation capabilities for accelerating the Department of Defense’s logistical missions. Meanwhile, XArc was tapped to advise USTRANSCOM leadership on the conditions needed to utilize commercial spaceports.

Chief of Space Operations Gen. John Raymond previously said the Rocket Cargo Vanguard has the potential to fundamentally alter the rapid logistics landscape and speed up the time it takes to deliver material to joint warfighters.

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Category: Space