Amazon Joins Commercial Space Race

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Amazon is joining the commercial space race and hopes to launch paying passengers into low earth orbit by the end of the decade. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced Tuesday that his company Blue Origin is taking over Launch Complex 36 at Cape Canaveral and renaming it Exploration Park. “Residents of the Space Coast have enjoyed front-row seats to the future for nearly 60 years,” Bezos wrote in a statement on Blue Origin’s website. “Our team’s passion for pioneering is the perfect fit for a community dedicated to forging new frontiers. Please keep watching.”

Bezos said he'll build a production facility at the complex to build and rebuild the reusable boosters that are the core of the new business. "Locating vehicle assembly near our launch site eases the challenge of processing and transporting really big rockets," Bezos said. He said the engine that will power Blue Origin launches, the BE-4, will be used for the United Launch Alliance's Vulcan rocket.