NASA adds $30 million for space taxi work
REUTERS - NASA is adding $30 million to its investment in three companies' efforts to develop spaceships that can fly astronauts to the International Space Station, officials said on Monday.
The U.S. space agency awarded $10 million to privately owned Sierra Nevada Corp, $9.99 million to Boeing (BA.N) and $9.59 million to privately owned Space Exploration Technologies to help the firms get their vehicles certified to fly to the station.
Since the retirement of the space shuttles last year, NASA has been dependent on Russia to fly astronauts to the $100 billion orbital outpost, a research laboratory owned and operated by 15 countries that flies about 250 miles (400 km) above Earth.
The companies have separate agreements with NASA to develop space transportation systems, with the aim of breaking Russia's monopoly by 2017. Boeing was awarded $460 million for its CST-100 capsule, Space Exploration Technologies received $440 million to upgrade its Dragon cargo capsule to carry people and Sierra Nevada was awarded $212.5 million for work on its winged Dream Chaser.
The earlier awards were to help fund the spaceship designs, while the new awards will help fund the process of certifying that they meet NASA safety requirements to carry humans.
"These contracts represent important progress in restoring human spaceflight capabilities to the United States," Phil McAlister, who oversees NASA's commercial spaceflight programs, said in a statement.
"NASA and its industry partners are committed to the goal of safely and cost-effectively launching astronauts from home within the next five years," he said.
The contracts run from January 22, 2013, through May 30, 2014.
(Reporting by Irene Klotz in Mojave, California; Editing by Jane Sutton and Lisa Shumaker)
- Tweet this
- Share this
- Digg this
- UPDATE 1-Boehner erupts at conservative groups ahead of U.S. budget vote
- UPDATE 2-Hawaii official who released Obama birth certificate dies in plane crash
- Republican feud boils over in U.S. budget deal fight
- US STOCKS-Wall St drops on taper anxiety; Facebook rallies
- South Africa admits error over 'schizophrenic' Mandela signer |
Guilty Of Treason
North Korea said on Friday Jang Song Thaek, the uncle of leader Kim Jong Un and previously considered the second most powerful man in the secretive state, has been executed after a special military tribunal found him guilty of treason. Full Article