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Jeff Bezos says he plans to send woman to Moon’s surface for first time

Jeff Bezos says his space company will send a woman to the Moon’s surface for the first time.

The Amazon billionaire announced his intention on Instagram, posting a video of an engine test at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.

He wrote: “This (BE-7) is the engine that will take the first woman to the surface of the Moon.”

CEO of Amazon Jeff Bezos (R) gestures as he addresses the Amazon's annual Smbhav event in New Delhi on January 15, 2020. - Bezos, whose worth has been estimated at more than $110 billion, is officially in India for a meeting of business leaders in New Delhi. (Photo by Sajjad  HUSSAIN / AFP) (Photo by SAJJAD  HUSSAIN/AFP via Getty Images)

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Jeff Bezos says his space company will take a woman to the Moon for the first time

The engine has been developed by Mr Bezos’s space company, Blue Origin, and has had 1,245 seconds of test-fire time, he said.

It will power the company’s National Team Human Landing System lunar lander.

Blue Origin is competing with Elon Musk’s SpaceX and Leidos-owned Dynetics to win a contract to build NASA’s next human lunar landing system to take humans – including the first woman – to the moon by 2024 as part of its Artemis programme.

Two of the three companies will be chosen in March to continue building their prototypes, although there are concerns about a lack of funding made available to NASA by Congress.

There is also uncertainty about where space exploration fits in the priorities of the incoming Joe Biden administration.

Blue Origin was founded by Mr Bezos in 2000 and aims to provide low-cost access to space.

The first woman to have flown in space was Russia’s Valentina Tereshkova, on the Vostok 6 in 1963

Jessica Meir and Christina Koch took part in the first all-female spacewalk in 2019.

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