Blue Origin sues NASA for awarding the lunar lander deal to Space X

Blue Origin sues NASA for awarding the lunar lander deal to Space X

by Pranali Mehta

Blue Origin, the American aerospace company owned by Jeff Bezos, has reportedly filed a new lawsuit against NASA over its decision to award its lunar lander development contract to Space X, the American aerospace company owned by Elon Musk.

According to reports, after NASA awarded SpaceX the $2.9 billion contract for the lunar lander, Blue Origin alleged that there were a number of fundamental issues with NASA’s deal with Space X. The latter also went on to label the deal as unfair.

The company further went on to claim that the evaluations NASA performed on the proposals at the time of the tender process were improper and unlawful.

 for the uninitiated, the dispute seems to stem from NASA’s decision back in April, where it handed the contract to just one company instead of the two as expected due to a funding shortfall.

NASA, on its part, has not yet commented on the turn of events, though it has the support of the federal watchdog.

Inside its court filing, Blue Origin argued that it continues to believe that two contractors would be required for the development of the lunar landing system, which is scheduled to ferry astronauts up to the Moon’s surface starting as early as 2024.

To restore fairness, create competition, and ensure America's safe return to the Moon, Blue Origin believes the concerns outlined in this procurement and its outcomes should be addressed.

A complaint from Blue Origin as well as defense contractor, Dynetic was previously rejected by Government Accountability Office (GAO), a US watchdog, which said that NASA had not acted improperly by awarding the project exclusively to one firm.

Back in July, Mr. Bezos had proposed to cover as much as $2 billion of NASA's costs so as to be reconsidered for the deal, however that request was promptly rejected.

As a factor in awarding the contract to SpaceX, NASA cited Elon Musk's proven record of orbital missions. Another factor that was considered was the cost; SpaceX's bid came in at the lowest by a good margin.

NASA is required to file an official response to Blue Origin’s the legal action by 12th of October 2021. Space X, which is the sole landing systems contractor for NASA’s Artemis programme, has not yet made a statement pertaining to the lawsuit.

Source credit: https://www.bbc.com/news/business-58235479

Pranali Mehta

A chemical engineer by qualification, Pranali Mehta dutifully walked down the slated path and worked in a chemical firm for a year. Her passion for writing however, pushed her into experimenting with the same as a career. With over three years of experience in content writ Read more...