Blue Origin gets its fourth launch contract for New Glenn


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Capitalism in space: Blue Origin has signed its fourth launch contract for putting satellites in orbit with its New Glenn rocket, this time with the Japanese company Sky Perfect JSAT.

Blue Origin now has satellite launch agreements with four companies. Last year, the company reported deals with Eutelsat, OneWeb and mu Space. Today Blue Origin said its memorandum of understanding with Thailand-based mu Space has been converted into a firm contract for a geostationary satellite launch.

No launch price was revealed, though I suspect the price is very competitive with SpaceX prices.

I expect that by the mid-2020s, these two companies will be completely dominating the commercial large satellite market. The one threat to that dominance will be whether that large satellite market will be able to compete with the new tiny cubesat and nanosat market that is only now beginning to develop. It could be that by the mid-2020s, almost all unmanned communications satellites will be small, and that the market for these big rockets will have shifted to manned space.

More likely, we will have a very vibrant smallsat market, a vibrant largesat market, and a emerging manned market, all vying for launch contracts from many different rocket companies. Things should be quite exciting.

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