NASA wants to buy more astronaut rides on private spaceships -
Oct 22, 2021 57 secs

NASA wants more private-sector firms to ferry astronauts up into space, including missions to and from the International Space Station.

"NASA has a need for additional crew rotation flights to the space station beyond the twelve missions the agency has awarded Boeing and SpaceX under the current contracts," Phil McAlister, NASA's director of commercial spaceflight, said in a statement.

Related: Commercial crews and private astronauts will boost International Space Station's science.

Those current contracts date from 2014, when NASA awarded Boeing and SpaceX transport contracts, via the Commercial Crew Program, to carry astronauts to and from the International Space Station following the retirement of the space shuttle in 2011.

Boeing's answer to the contract has been Starliner — a spacecraft that has so far flown only one uncrewed test flight that did not succeed at reaching the space station. .

Meanwhile, SpaceX has already flown three crewed missions to the orbiting lab (two operational missions and one test flight), and the company is getting ready to launch another crew of four astronauts to the station next week. .

Join our Space Forums to keep talking space on the latest missions, night sky and more.

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