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Wed, Jun 12, 2019

SpaceX Sues U.S. Government Over AF Rocket Contracts

Company Was Passed Over In The Pentagon's Launch Services Agreement Awards

SpaceX has filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Air Force over the way it selected companies for Launch Service Awards (LSA) ... of which SpaceX was not in the mix.

The Air Force awarded $2.25 billion split between United Launch Alliance, Blue Origin and Orbital Sciences for the development of a Launch System Prototype for the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle program. SpaceX claims in the suit filed in the U.S. Federal Court of Claims that the selection process was somewhat "opaque", and that the company appears to have been scored lower than the others because of its Starship rocket which is still in development.

But according to a report from The Motley Fool, SpaceX had proposed using its flight-ready Falcon 9 and Falcon heavy rockets for the program, and argues that these mature systems have less development risks than others still in development. The suit asks the court to "enjoin any further investment by the Government under the LSAs and any further performance by ULA, Blue Origin, and Northrop under the LSAs", and reopen the competition after reevaluating the LSA proposals.

At stake are Launch Services Procurement contracts to be awarded sometime next year, which will launch some 25 national security satellites through 2027.

SpaceX could still bid on the LSP contracts, but it says in its complaint that it wants to ensure a "level playing field" for the bidding process.

(Image from file)

FMI: Source report

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