ATK claims it will build the Liberty system even if NASA does not award it any CCDev-2 (Commercial Crew Development – Phase 2) money: ATK moving forward with Liberty rocket – The Salt Lake Tribune (via Parabolic Arc).
It’s great if they really want to compete in the commercial marketplace. Not long ago they were campaigning hard that there was no commercial market for such vehicles.
I also wonder how much of the KSC infrastructure they assume they can use without paying for it. === The EELV maker is getting plenty of support from DoD: Boost Planned for Pentagon Space Projects – WSJ.com.
> Recipients of the proposed increases would include the Air Force’s most powerful rockets: Delta IVs and Atlas 5s, supplied by a joint venture of Boeing Co. and Lockheed Martin Corp., according to government and industry officials.
Those rockets are expected to get nearly $1.8 billion under President Barack Obama’s fiscal 2012 spending blueprint, more than 25% higher than previous budget projections. Over five years, that budget line would climb to a total of about $10 billion, a roughly 50% jump from earlier projections.
It appears that SpaceX has effectively been excluded from the Defense launch market, while ULA is getting a substantial boost in funding. This certainly will help the Atlas V based entries in the CCDev program since the higher volume will allow them to lower their launch prices.