Jeff Bezos said Blue Origin’s first crewed spaceflight on Tuesday represented one step toward the company’s mission of expanding to a point where people live and work in space.
“This is a tiny little step of what Blue Origin is going to do. What we’re really trying to do is build reusable space vehicles. It’s the only way to build a road to space, and we need to build a road to space so that our children can build the future,” Bezos told CNBC’s Morgan Brennan.
“If you want to be a space entrepreneur today, you have to do everything from the beginning. There’s no real infrastructure that’s at an affordable cost. So that’s what we have to do, is build that kind of infrastructure and then future generations will get to rest on top of it,” Bezos added.
Bezos flew as one of the four passengers on the inaugural crew launch of its New Shepard rocket and capsule. The founder of Blue Origin, Bezos sees New Shepard as a pathfinder for his company’s other, larger scale projects.
“This suborbital tourism mission lets us practice,” Bezos said. “We need to do that over and over and over and get as good at running space vehicles as we are as a civilization at running commercial airliners.”
Beyond its space tourism rocket New Shepard, his company is also working on a massive orbital rocket called New Glenn, a stable of next-generation rocket engines, and a crewed lunar lander. Bezos emphasized that “reusable space vehicles,” like New Shepard which launches and lands, are key to Blue Origin’s goal.
More time for Blue Origin
Bezos emphasized that he now has more time to spend focused on his space venture, which he founded in 2000.
“Since I stepped down as the CEO of Amazon, I have a lot of time to dedicate to this vision. so I’m going to split my time between this and the Bezos Earth Fund, which is the climate sustainability foundation,” Bezos said.
Additionally, his view from space on Tuesday meant Bezos got a first hand look at “how tiny this planet’s atmosphere is.”
“It’s really this small thing supporting all life. So we need to take all polluting industry, all heavy industries and move it off Earth. This could take many decades, but that’s what we can do,” Bezos added.
Going up again
Floating inside of New Shepard’s capsule for a couple minutes in microgravity Bezos said was a “beautiful” experience.
“It felt so comfortable and natural,” Bezos said.
Asked by CNBC’s Brennan if he’s “going to do it again,” Bezos replied emphatically.
“Hell yeah!” Bezos said.