So, it has happened. The U.S. Court of Federal Claims has ruled against Jeff Bezos and Blue Origin regarding its law from NASA. Is it done now? Is it over? Well, hopefully. Jeff Bezos looks to have finally accepted the decision on who will be developing the initial lander system for NASA’s return to the Moon. The US Court of Federal Claims ruled against Blue Origin’s claim that the decision process for the HLS was flawed. Jeff accepted the decision seemingly gracefully tweeting out that this was "Not the decision they wanted, but we respect the court’s judgment, and wish full success for NASA and SpaceX on the contract".
Elon of course couldn’t help himself but tweet out his reaction to this decision with a polite and welcoming gesture in the form of this meme. The childlike humour from Elon there shining through. I know it seems a little unusal the way Musk uses Twitter, but I must say, there is a reason he is so popular with the masses. He certainly isn't your typical billionare. Nor do we want him to be. It reminds me of the response to my tweet here. So hopefully this at least means there won’t be any more escalations of this lawsuit in future. For now at least, NASA will likely return as soon as possible to continue the HLS development process with SpaceX. As we’ve seen in Tim’s interview with Elon, a lot of aspects of the landing system are not decided yet. For example: Will they use the side thruster idea or not?
But not all is blue for Blue Origin! They rolled out the New Glenn pathfinder into the open to give us a glimpse of it in the wild! Nice shot by Kyle Montgomery of it here. Obviously this is not going to be flight hardware but more tests of dimensions, logistics and fit checks. It might enable them to test processing of the stage before launch and after landing. Now this is the same pathfinder that we’ve seen evidence of for quite a while now, so this isn’t brand new. But all the same, it is nice to see something rolling out of the facility there.
!!— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 31, 2021