An anonymous reader writes "Design News reports that Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos is seeking patents related to his 'Blue Origin' commercial space venture. Blue Origin was recently in the news when Bezos quietly admitted that its second test capsule launch in August went out of control at 47,000 feet. The head scratcher with the patents, according to Design News, is that one is for a two-stage rocket, which doesn't seem particularly novel. What is unique, and questionable as to whether it will work, is patent application 20110017872 for 'Sea Landing of Space Launch Vehicles and Associated Systems and Methods.' This one has a reusable rocket going up into suborbital flight, then the booster stage reenters the earth's atmosphere in a tail-first orientation and lands upright on a ship (boat)."
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