Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin Tests Engine That Will Take Astronauts Back to the Moon

The BE-7 engine will power the Moon landing.
Fabienne Lang
Blue Origin's BE-7 engine during the testBlue Origin

Jeff Bezos' space company Blue Origin carried out its fourth successful thrust chamber test series last week. Its BE-7 engine's thrust chamber was fired up for a little over 20 seconds, which brings its total time to 1,245 seconds as Bezos' mentioned in an Instagram post

The BE-7 is the engine that will power NASA astronauts back to the moon in 2024, which will include the first woman astronaut to touch down on the moon's surface as part of the Artemis Program.


Last week's engine test was carried out at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, as Bezos' Instagram post wrote.

"This is the engine that will take the first woman to the surface of the Moon," read his post. 

"The BE-7, a turbomachinery-based engine using the most efficient propellants, is optimal for deep-space maneuvers and landing on the Moon," said Brent Sherwood, vice president, Advanced Development Programs, of Blue Origin.

Aside from creating history, the high-performance BE-7 engine can also produce 10,000 lbf of thrust — "throttling down to 2,000 lbf of thrust for a precise landing on the Moon," Blue Origin reported in its news release.

John Vilja, senior vice president, Engines, at Blue Origin said, "The high specific impulse, deep throttling, and restart capabilities of the BE-7 make it the ideal engine for large lunar payload transport as well as many other in-space applications."

Blue Origin is part of a group of companies that were chosen to build moon landers for NASA's upcoming Moon launch. The lunar lander is a crucial part of the Artemis Program. 

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Blue Origin heads the Human Landing Systems (HLS) Team, which includes Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Draper. 

"As prime contractor, Blue Origin leads program management, systems engineering, safety and mission assurance, and mission engineering and operations; and develops the Descent Elementm" reads the press release. 

Lockheed Martin is in charge of the Ascent Element and crewed flight operations and training. Northrop Grumman heads the Transfer Element, which delivers the lander into low lunar orbit and final descent. And finally, Draper heads descent guidance.

Take a look at the firing up of an iconic engine below: 

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