The two wealthiest men in the world have been competing in the space race with their aerospace firms. The latest contest stands for a NASA contract that required a lander for its crewed mission to the moon, and Elon Musk’s SpaceX turned out to be the sole contractor for space missions. The company was awarded $2.9 billion by NASA earlier this month under the Artemis program. However, Musk still didn’t shy away from making fun of the company.
On Thursday, Elon Musk mocked a photo of the moon lander created by Jeff Bezos’ aerospace company, Blue Origin. His tweet came hours after Blue Origin criticized NASA for awarding a $2.9 billion contract to SpaceX. Blue Origin said it would continue to challenge NASA’s “preferential treatment.”
In response to Blue Origin’s statement, Musk tweeted a photo of Blue Moon with the caption: “Somehow, this wasn’t convincing.”
Jeff Bezos is the second person to fly out to space through self-finance. Musk, on the other hand, is also very passionate to travel to space. His company is heavily focused on the development and deployment of the Falcon 9 rocket. The rocket has already delivered cargo as well as crews to the International Space Station (ISS).
However, Bezos’s company comparatively has not much to brag about apart from its latest mission. Their New Shepard rocket is still carrying out its test flights. Blue Origin’s other rocket, the New Glenn, is still in its development phase. It was initially scheduled for a test flight in 2020.
The two companies were working with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to develop its Human Landing System (HLS) to send a crewed mission to the moon. However, after working with both companies, NASA handed over the contract to SpaceX. Unhappy with the award, Blue Origins criticized NASA for shifting the goalposts at the last moment and taking “high risk” to work with SpaceX alone.
Jeff Bezos also wrote an open letter to NASA administrator Bill Nelson in the series of current events. He offered a substantial discount along with a new free mission to be part of the HLS program again. In addition, Blue Origin also filed a complaint to the Government Accountability Office (GAO). Still, the agency released a 76-page report that ruled in favour of NASA choosing SpaceX as the sole winner of the $2.9 billion Human Landing System contract (HLS).
“NASA has executed a flawed acquisition for the Human Landing System program and moved the goalposts at the last minute,” Blue Origin said in a statement quoted in a New York Times report.