Blue Origin is working to convince the U.S. Air Force to continue to fund the development of the New Glenn rocket in order to get it certified to perform national security missions, SpaceNews reported Monday.
“We’re discussing with the Air Force the path forward for certification,” Megan Mitchell, director of government and legislative affairs at Blue Origin, told the publication.
She said the company had started the development of “national security space-unique infrastructure” and completed the assessment phase of the certification process for national security space launches.
“As space becomes increasingly contested, the national security space community needs more options at their disposal, not less,” Mitchell added.
Blue Origin is working on New Glenn under a potential $500M contract awarded in October 2018. It was one of the four companies that submitted proposals for the second phase of the National Security Space Launch program, but United Launch Services and SpaceX were announced in August as winners of launch services contracts.