United Launch Alliance, a joint association of Boeing Co and Lockheed Martin Corp, beat SpaceX in the competition for a satellite launch of Air Force for the first time, stated by both the launch companies.
The contact includes the launch services for numerous satellites that aboard Atlas 5 rocket in this June. The value of the contract is around $191 million reported by Airforce.
The award has gained the status of being the first of its kind right after the certification of Falcon 9 rockets by SpaceX for flights has been materialized by the Air Force opening the launch contracts bidding in 2015. It is not to be forgotten that SpaceX happens to be the rival of United Launch Alliance. ULA sat out the first solicitation of the Air Force, however, it lost the second. ULA had a monopoly on the launch business of the military previously.
An official of SpaceX has reported to Reuters that the company did not expect of winning the bidding contest as the mission needed a launcher that could lift heavier weights and the company’s Falcon Heavy booster has not yet taken off.
Spokesman of SpaceX, John Taylor replied in a mail “The performance of the mission needed for us to bid Falcon Heavy. We submitted a bid for that reason, although we were aware that our first flight of Falcon Heavy might occur post the time of the award. We did not expect to win the mission as we have no relevant experience of flying Falcon Heavy.”
Falcon Heavy of SpaceX is supposed to debut the current year.
A completely new booster would require to take off successfully before the awarding of SpaceX on the launch of Falcon Heavy launch contract by Air Force, thrice before the flying of any military satellites of high priority, as stated by Claire Leon in a conference call, the enterprise director of the launch for the Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center.