USAF Secretary Meets With ULA and Blue Origin CEOs, Briefed On Vulcan Centaur Written 25 August 2021


An Atlas-Centaur rocket launches Surveyor 1. | Credit: NASA; Wikipedia; Public Domain

Space News reports that on August 24, US Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall “met with the chief executives of United Launch Alliance and Blue Origin and was briefed on the Vulcan Centaur, a new launch vehicle developed by ULA that is powered by Blue Origin’s BE-4 engines.” According to Space News, the “main topic of the meeting were the delays in the development and testing of the BE-4 rocket engine that ULA needs in order to fly its new rocket.” Kendall didn’t provide details of his discussions with ULA CEO Tory Bruno and Blue Origin CEO Bob Smith, but “he expressed confidence that they will be able to work through the problems.” Kendall added that one of the reasons “he pushed to have two providers in the national security space launch program is to offer a fallback in case one of them isn’t able to launch payloads.” Kendall said that he believes ULA and Blue Origin “will probably get there, and they’re motivated to do that. So we’ll see what happens. Hopefully we’ll be all right and they won’t have any additional schedule delays.”
Full Story (Space News)