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Our reusable launch vehicle is taking payloads – and soon you – to space.
Open Modal Experience New Shepard
New Shepard’s Latest Flight
The New Shepard system is a fully reusable, vertical takeoff, vertical landing (VTVL) space vehicle. The system consists of a pressurized capsule atop a booster. The combined vehicles launch vertically, accelerating for approximately two and a half minutes, before the engine cuts off. The capsule then separates from the booster to coast quietly into space. After a few minutes of free fall, the booster performs an autonomously controlled rocket-powered vertical landing, while the capsule lands softly under parachutes, both ready to be used again. Reusability allows us to fly the system again and again. With each flight, we’ll continuously improve the affordability of space exploration and research, opening space for all.
Precision-Tested & Built
The New Shepard capsule and booster are being designed and tested to exceptionally high standards, in a process that is both rigorous and disciplined. Our manufacturing and assembly technicians have years of experience in aircraft and spacecraft manufacturing.
All elements of the New Shepard system are being tested extensively, both on the ground and during uncrewed test flights. From vibration tables and thermal chambers to hundreds of engine firings, these tests stress the vehicles and all of their subsystems.
Our flight test program continues to build experience with the New Shepard system in an uncrewed configuration, leading up to the day when we are ready for astronauts to climb on board for launch.
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Ring & Wedge Fins
As the rocket reenters the atmosphere, air flows through a ring at the top of the booster, passively moving the center of pressure to help control descent. Four wedge-shaped fins also deploy to further enhance aerodynamic stability.
Descending at the speed of sound, the booster deploys eight large drag brakes, reducing the vehicle’s speed by half.
In addition to powering the New Shepard system to space with 489 kN (110,000 lbf) of thrust, the BE-3PM liquid rocket engine is also designed to restart as the vehicle returns, slowing the booster to just 8 km/h (5 mph) for landing.
Fins near the base of the booster stabilize the vehicle during ascent and then pivot to steer it back to the landing pad on descent. Hydraulic actuators provide enough force to drive these fins through airspeeds up to Mach 4.
Retractable landing legs deploy for a controlled landing on the pad.
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Facts & Figures
Become An Astronaut
Experience the overview effect firsthand when you fly to space on board New Shepard. At the apex of your 11-minute flight, you will float above the thin limb of the atmosphere and gaze upon the Earth below.
Send Something to Space With Blue
Whether you are a school who wants your own space program for the cost of sports uniforms or you’re a researcher or entrepreneur using microgravity for your technology – New Shepard is enabling low cost and frequent access to space for you.
Join the Mission
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