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News Link • Space Travel and Exploration

Timeline: The privatization of space exploration

 The pad at the Kennedy Space Center is best known for being the blast off point of the Apollo missions to the moon and of the more than one hundred flights of NASA’s space shuttle.

Launch Pad 39A sent its first spacecraft skyward in 1967. More than 45 years later, it costs NASA roughly $100,000 per month to maintain, an extravagant expense considering the government agency folded its Space Shuttle Program after 30 years in 2011. Musk’s firm beat out Blue Origin, which is owned by Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, largely because it has spacecraft, such as its Falcon 9 rocket, that are already ready to take off.

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