Blue Origin protests NASA’s awarding of moon lander contract to SpaceX By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Amazon and Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos speaks to the media about the New Shepard rocket booster and Crew Capsule model at 33rd Colorado Springs Space Symposium

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(Reuters) – Blue Origin, the space rocket company backed by billionaire Jeff Bezos, is officially contesting NASA’s $ 2.9 billion lunar landing contract for Elon Musk’s SpaceX.

Blue Origin said Monday it had lodged a protest with the Federal Accountability Office, accusing NASA of moving the goal posts for contract bidders at the last minute.

NASA placed an order with SpaceX earlier this month to build a spaceship for the delivery of astronauts to the moon as early as 2024. She chose Musk’s company over Blue Origin and defense company Dynetics Inc.

The coveted project aims to bring humans back to the moon for the first time since 1972.

“NASA made a flawed acquisition for the Human Landing System program and moved the goal posts at the last minute,” Blue Origin said in a statement it emailed.

“Your decision eliminates competitive opportunities, severely restricts the supply base and not only delays but also jeopardizes America’s return to the moon. This is the reason why we protested at GAO.”

Musk’s SpaceX bid alone, while Amazon.com (NASDAQ 🙂 founder Bezos’ Blue Origin partnered Lockheed Martin Corp (NYSE :), Northrop Grumman Corp (NYSE 🙂 and Draper.

The filing of Blue Origin’s 50-page protest was previously reported by the New York Times.

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