Boeing allowed to bid for U.S. space launch contracts again

Sunday, March 6, 2005 Boeing's Launch Systems, Launch Services and Delta Program business units are to be allowed to bid once more for U.S. space launch contracts, the USAF has announced.

Boeing had been suspended since July 24, 2003 after violating federal law. The company was discovered to have been in possession of thousands of pages of documentation from Lockheed Martin, Boeing's rival during the 1998 evolved expendable launch vehicle source selection process.

The USAF and Boeing have signed an interim agreement to protect the Air Force's interests. The agreement allows for the reinstating of the suspension if Boeing is indicted or convicted, or if new evidence is found.

Boeing will have to submit to outside verification of the remedial steps it has taken, and cannot charge the Air Force for associated costs. Internal management responsibilities for ethical practice have been changed.

Lockheed Martin's Atlas V and Boeing's Delta IV are two types of expendable rocket, designed to reduce the cost of space launches.