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Jeff Bezos’ latest ‘Blue Origin’ rocket fails during liftoff

The New Shepard booster that flew to space. (Blue Origin/TNS)

A Blue Origin launch ended with disappointment Monday when the rocket failed during liftoff.

It was the first launch failure reported by Jeff Bezos’ rocket company.

Flames shot out of the rocket shortly after it blasted off in West Texas at an altitude of about 28,000 feet, engaging the emergency launch abort system. The rocket separated from the capsule, which was carrying a number of science experiments concocted by NASA and groups of students, and the capsule parachuted back to the ground.

The rocket was the same type that has previously been used to take customers and researchers on 10-minute suborbital space trips, including a flight last month with an undisclosed cost.

The Federal Aviation Administration said the rocket crashed without causing injuries or damage. All launches are postponed until the FAA can investigate the failure.

Blue Origin announced that the incident wasn’t planned and then followed up that a booster error had occurred but that the escape system functioned properly.

Monday’s launch was the 22nd for the company. Bezos himself flew with the first crew. Actor William Shatner flew with the company in October 2021.


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