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Elon Musk's SpaceX wins 2 Pentagon contracts to use Falcon 9 rockets

File photo of a Falcon 9 rocket

The Pentagon has signed contracts with Elon Musk's aerospace company SpaceX for about $160 million to launch its Falcon 9 rockets for two separate missions. 

In a statement on Tuesday, the Department of Defense (DOD) announced, “Space Exploration Technologies Corp., Hawthorne, California, has been awarded two individual firm-fixed-price task orders totaling $159,721,445 under the National Security Space Launch Phase 2 contract.”

The two contracts are expected to be completed by the end of 2023, the Pentagon said. It did not disclose the cost of each individual mission.

The launches will take place in Vandenberg Air Force Base, in California, and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, in Florida, it added.

Another launch provider, the United Launch Alliance, was also awarded two Pentagon contracts Tuesday for $224.2 million, the DOD said.

The ULA, which is a joint venture between Boeing and Lockheed Martin, will also provide its Vulcan Centaur rockets for launch services.

The ULA launches are also scheduled before the end of 2023.

This is the third time SpaceX has signed an agreement with the Pentagon. In October, the company won a $149 million contract to make missile-tracking satellites for the DOD – SpaceX's first government contract to build satellites.

In July, SpaceX won 40 percent of an agreement with the US military to launch new rockets for the Space Force. The other 60 percent went to the ULA.


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