Artist’s illustration of the OmegA rocket. Credit: Northrop Grumman
Northrop Grumman says it will not continue development of the OmegA rocket after the U.S. Space Force last month picked United Launch Alliance and SpaceX as the military’s two top launch contractors over the next seven years.
A company spokesperson said Sept. 9 that Northrop Grumman is not protesting the Space Force’s decision in the National Security Space Launch competition.
“We have chosen not to continue development of the OmegA launch system at this time,” Northrop Grumman said. “We look forward to continuing to play a key role in National Security Space Launch missions and leveraging our OmegA investments in other activities across our business.”
Northrop Grumman proposed the OmegA launch system to the Pentagon in a competition for lucrative contracts to haul national security satellites into orbit. Blue Origin, SpaceX, and United Launch Alliance were the other competitors.
The Pentagon awarded Northrop Grumman a $792 million contract in 2018 to continue development of the OmegA rocket, on top of an investment of more than $300 million in the program by Northrop Grumman and the Air Force in preceding years.
The 2018 contract was an intermediate step in the Pentagon’s effort ...