Jeff Bezos Has Blamed Elon Musk’s Rockets For Spewing Too Much Heat In The Neighbourhood

A bitter rivalry between Blue Origin and SpaceX has arisen as a result of Jeff Bezos’s claims that Elon Musk’s SpaceX rockets release excessive heat. Blue Origin recently filed a complaint over the environmental effects of SpaceX’s Starship rocket launches from Florida’s Kennedy Space Center with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The FAA has been pushed to restrict the quantity of these launches by Bezos’s firm.

Musk responded to the complaint with a cheeky tweet: “Sue Origin” — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 25, 2024.

The complaint, filed as a public comment, contends that Starship may have a “greater environmental impact than any other launch system” at the space center. Blue Origin expressed concerns about potential risks, including air contamination, loud noise, vibrations, road closures, and possible explosions or debris from the launches. To mitigate these issues, Blue Origin has requested the FAA to cap the number of Starship launches at the Florida site, enhance launch infrastructure to distribute the environmental impact, and reassess the environmental tests previously conducted at SpaceX’s Texas launch site.

The Starship system, which includes the Starship spaceship and the Super Heavy booster, is still in development. So far, it has only reached space on two out of four test flights. According to Business Insider, a physicist noted that a 2023 launch generated heat and pressure comparable to a volcanic explosion, and debris such as soil and sand rained down on a nearby town. Once fully operational, the Starship system could have significant environmental consequences. Blue Origin’s filing emphasized the Super Heavy booster’s massive fuel capacity of 5,200 metric tons of liquid methane, which they argue could pose safety risks to nearby operational sites.

SpaceX plans to launch 44 Starship-Super Heavy flights annually under a NASA lease. This dispute is not the first between these space giants; Blue Origin previously sued NASA over a lunar lander contract awarded to SpaceX, which was initially dismissed but later granted to Blue Origin for the Artemis program.

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