News | Story

NASA extends SpaceX’s Commercial Crew contract by three missions for $900 million

NASA extends SpaceX’s Commercial Crew contract by three missions for $900 million

NASA announced today that it has officially awarded SpaceX the Crew-7, Crew-8, and Crew-9 missions to the International Space Station, bringing SpaceX’s total Commercial Crew Transportation Capability (CCtCap) contract to $3.49 billion. The missions are part of the company’s Commercial Crew Transportation Capability (CCtCap) contract with NASA.

When the initial $2.6 billion contracts were awarded to SpaceX in 2014, they were for developing American crewed launch capabilities, which had been terminated in 2011 when the Space Shuttle was decommissioned. Since 2020, the commercial spaceflight firm has successfully launched three operational flights to the International Space Station (ISS), dubbed Crew-1 through Crew-3 (plus one crewed test flight). The missions were launched using the company’s Crew Dragon spacecraft and Falcon 9 rocket.

In addition to the Crew-4 and Crew-5 flights in 2022 and Crew-6 in 2023, SpaceX was contracted to conduct three additional trips to the International Space Station. According to NASA, the extension will be “fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity” and will be completed by the end of 2018. SpaceX’s term of performance has been extended until March 31, 2028, ensuring a steady stream of revenue for the rapidly expanding launch and space operations corporation.

According to Kathy Lueders, associate administrator of NASA’s Space Operations Mission Directorate, “it is critical that we begin securing additional flights to the space station now so that we are ready when these missions are required to maintain a U.S. presence on the station.” The notice of intent to modify SpaceX’s contract, published in December 2021, stated that “the United States’ presence on the space station is essential.” “Our continuing safe operations in orbit, as well as the development of our low-Earth orbit economy, is dependent on our capacity to launch humans from the United States.”

NASA noted in that notification that SpaceX is the only American business presently approved to transfer personnel to the International Space Station. A six-mission Commercial Crew and Transportation Capability (CCtCap) contract from NASA was awarded to Boeing in 2014, with a total value of $4.2 billion. However, Boeing’s Starliner spaceship is currently in the uncrewed testing phase. A test mission with an Atlas V rocket to rendezvous with the International Space Station is expected for May 2022, when it will be operational.

NASA hopes to eventually combine the efforts of the SpaceX and Boeing Commercial Crew projects to transport passengers to the International Space Station (ISS). The Russian space agency Roscosmos was responsible for all transportation to and from the International Space Station between the retirement of the Space Shuttle and SpaceX’s Commercial Crew Program certification. According to a study released in 2019 by NASA’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG), the space agency spent an average of $55.4 million per seat on the Russian space launch vehicle Soyuz between 2006 and 2020. By the conclusion of that period, NASA was believed to be paying the Russian space agency $86 million for each seat. According to the same OIG study, SpaceX’s average cost per seat is $55 million, whereas Boeing’s average cost per seat is $90 million.

Related News

Top Gaming News – October 07

Previously Requiring A Deposit, Steam Decks May Now Be Ordered Immediately And Sent to You in Only 1-2 Weeks. You no longer need a reservation

Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Share The News

Follow Us

Newsletter