Boeing Company

From SpaceWiki

Jump to: navigation, search
X-37B Cartoon.jpg

The Boeing Company is proof positive that not all corporate players in NewSpace are actually new to space projects. In fact, Boeing has been a primary contractor for NASA since the Apollo program, when it helped build the Saturn V rockets that launched us to the Moon. It has also acquired the company that acquired the original primary contractor for construction of the Space Shuttle orbiter, and has built several modules for the International Space Station. The only question now is whether it can keep up these contributions without getting all the funding for them from the government.

Over the last few decades, Boeing has purchased many of the companies or divisions that helped to produce the last 50 years of NASA vehicles and is the dominant United States space contractor. Notably, Boeing has acquired the Douglas Aircraft Company that built parts of Mercury, Gemini, and the Apollo rockets as well as North American Aviation that built the Apollo Command Module and the Space Shuttles. They also acquired the Hughes Electronics' Space and Communications division back in 2000 to become part of the Boeing Satellite Development Center. One of the main reasons why all of the consolidation of the defense (and space) industries happened was a famous meeting called the last supper, where defense secretary Les Aspin forced the United States' main defense companies to acquire each other to create a less-crowded and more-viable defense industry. Whether this has been good or bad is up to debate. In any case, it leaves a very wide gap in the space industry between multi-billion dollar companies like Boeing and small companies like Armadillo Aerospace with less than a dozen employees.

Personal tools