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Utah company Uplift Aerospace uses special paint for next Blue Origin launch

Posted at 3:13 PM, Sep 01, 2020

SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah company focused on sending products into outer space is now working to create art for Blue Origin’s next spacecraft launch.

The project, created by Uplift Aerospace, is unlike anything they’ve done in the past, but one that the company hopes inspires others to continue exploring space.

“We want to be able... create a story that really inspires people,” said Josh Hanes.

Hanes is the owner of Uplift Aerospace, and he’s teaming up with artists Jeff Hein and Mark Pugh to paint the exterior panels of a Blue Origin rocket that will be launched during an upcoming Shepard mission.

“It will accelerate to Mach speed, flow in the vacuum of space, and then on reentry, experience all the different harsh sources, changes in temperature and that’s what we’ve been working on with artists here in Utah,” said Hanes.

Hanes says it’s not as simple as just taking a paint brush to the rocket. They have to study and find materials that will withstand the whole process of going to space and back.

“They’re not painting on a normal canvas, this is a high-tech rocket and they’re not using normal paints,” Hanes said. “And so we needed painters who are masters at their craft, and that’s Jeff and Mark.”

Once the rocket does return to earth, the person who commissions the work will be able to own the paintings.

“These rocket panels with the paintings on them will be curated and delivered to whoever commissions the artwork, so they’ll own this piece of art and aerospace history,” Hanes said.

Not only is this a research project for the company but a project that Hanes hopes pushes boundaries and inspires others to do the same.

“We’re always looking to space, to explore and to connect... understand our connection in the cosmos, and I think that’s what this project is all about,” Hanes said.

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