Rocket company Blue Origin has pulled off a double success.
The aerospace startup led by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos tested the escape system of its space capsule Wednesday in remote west Texas.
Not only did the capsule land safely under parachutes following liftoff, the rocket managed to fly back and land upright. This was the first in-flight test of the emergency escape system for the New Shepard system.
The rocket and capsule system are intended for suborbital flight and are called New Shepard after the first American in space, Alan Shepard. Bezos hopes to start launching tourists and other paying customers in the years ahead.
Blue Origin is aiming for reusability to lower launch costs. This rocket has flown five times and is now bound for a museum.