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News Link • Space Travel and Exploration

Want A Ride To The ISS? SpaceX And Boeing Will Take You


Ladies and gentlemen, we have a winner – well two, actually.

Today, NASA announced that two private companies will be tasked with taxiing NASA astronauts to and from the International Space Station, beginning in 2017. And the spoils go to Boeing and SpaceX.

The companies will sign contracts with NASA to further develop their spacecraft to deliver astronauts to and from the ISS. Boeing will receive $4.2 billion to build its CST-100 spacecraft, a vehicle it has been working on for the past four years, while SpaceX will receive $2.6 billion to create an upgraded rendition of its Dragon spacecraft, aptly named Dragon Version 2. The original Dragon is currently being used to ferry cargo from Earth to the ISS.

The CST-100 and Dragon V2 outwardly look similar to NASA's Orion capsule, but they can both hold up to seven crewmembers each. To get to the ISS, Boeing's CST-100 will be launched on the United Launch Alliance's Atlas V rocket, and SpaceX will launch the Dragon V2 on its own Falcon 9 v1.1 rocket.

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