These Are the Names of the SpaceX and Boeing Astronauts

08 August, 2018, 21:31 | Author: Ann Santiago
  • SpaceX Dragon

NASA today announced the names of nine USA astronauts who will be the first to ride to the International Space Station on private spacecraft made by Boeing and SpaceX.

The vessels, the SpaceX Dragon and Boeing Starliner, have been developed with billions of dollars in funding from NASA, which has contracted SpaceX and Northrop Grumman to make cargo deliveries to the space station since 2012. They will be the first Americans to launch into space from US soil since NASA's space shuttle program retired in 2011.Since then, the USA has relied on Russia's Soyuz spacecraft to carry Americans space.

Flying the first crewed flight on Boeing's CST-100 Starliner are NASA astronauts Eric Boe, Nicole Aunapu Mann and Boeing astronaut Chris Ferguson.

NASA has had to partner with Russian Federation to launch astronauts to the International Space Station since the space shuttle program ended. The delays could even result in a gap in USA access to the space station, because NASA has contracted for seats on Soyuz only through November 2019, the report found.

He said the announcement advances "our great American vision" and strengthens America's leadership in space.

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"The opportunity to fly in a new vehicle is any test pilot and astronaut's dream", Mike Hopkins, an Air Force colonel who will fly aboard the Crew Dragon on its first mission, wrote on Twitter.

All nine have military experience in Navy, Air Force, or Marines.

Set to command what is scheduled to be NASA's first launch of astronauts from USA soil in seven years is Chris Ferguson, a 56-year-old Philly-born space explorer.

SpaceX's Dragon cargo spacecraft came back to Earth on Friday after completion of its mission of supplying cargo to the International Space Station. "I'll tell you, being able to launch to the International Space Station from USA soil, I can't imagine better", Cassada said. This will be Ms. Mann's first launch, having joined the astronaut corps in 2013. In 2013 and 2014, Hopkins spent almost six months aboard the ISS, logging almost 13 hours of spacewalks.

The first crewed flights will only spend a short period of time in orbit before coming back to Earth. With 322 days in space, Williams is sixth all-time on NASA's spaceflight endurance list and second all-time among female astronauts.

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The first full mission of Boeing's Starliner, which will fly to the ISS for a long-duration stay, will take ISS veteran Suni Williams and spaceflight newcomer Josh Cassada. Boe was selected by NASA to be an astronaut in 2000.

As for being the only non-NASA guy on board, Ferguson explained later during a Reddit "Ask Me Anything" program that Boeing always uses company test pilots for first flights "and the Starliner is no exception".

Victor Glover: Glover is a native of Pomona, California and he has three master's degrees.

Both Boeing and SpaceX are also working with Bigelow Aerospace, a Las Vegas company that plans to launch private space stations into orbit, to be leased to nations or companies.

After years of vehicle development and building anticipation, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has now put the crew in commercial crew spacecraft.

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