Bezos stated in an open letter to NASA that his firm Blue Origin is ready to defer up to $2 billion in NASA payments over the next two fiscal years in exchange for a fixed-price lander contract.
In a letter, he chastised NASA for relying on a single business to build the lunar lander, claiming that this strategy would “put a stop to real competition for years to come” by tying the government to SpaceX’s rocket technology.
The appeal comes just a week before the Government Accountability Office is set to rule on Blue Origin’s official complaint of NASA’s award to SpaceX, which was lodged earlier this spring. Bezos stated, “All NASA needs to do is take advantage of this offer and modify” the contract.
Bezos’ current offer is the latest in a series of attempts to secure Blue Origin’s contract. Furthermore, Blue Origin would fund a Blue Moon test flight to low-Earth orbit on its own own, an accomplishment that would be worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Bezos stated, “I feel this mission is vital.”
It’s difficult to predict how NASA will react to the open letter. The Human Landing System project will be halted until the US Government Accountability Office investigates Blue Origin’s objection. It’s worth noting that this isn’t the first time a Bezos-affiliated firm has had a contract issue with the US government.