These nine American astronauts will make commercial spaceflight history

These nine American astronauts will make commercial spaceflight history

SpaceX is targeting November for its inaugural Crew Dragon test flight, but Boeing won't launch its passenger spacecraft Starliner until late this year or early next. Their mission is scheduled for April 2019.

Trump wasn't the only one heralding NASA's commercial crew announcement today. "As a test pilot, it doesn't get any better than this". "But you know, it looks like it might". Williams previously logged 321 days in orbit on two stays aboard the space station, most recently returning to the Earth in 2012.

In addition to naming the crews of the test flights, NASA also announced the four astronauts who will fly aboard the first operational Starliner and Dragon missions to the space station.

Michael Hopkins, a NASA astronaut who has spent 166 days on the space station in the past, and who also went on two spacewalks.

It's been a long trip for these astronauts.

NASA officials didn't state why a three-person crew would be flying on the Starliner test flight, but the agency announced an agreement earlier this year with Boeing to study turning that crewed test flight into an operational mission in the event of further commercial crew delays. Eric Boe, Christopher Ferguson and Nicole Aunabu Mann will be the Starliner test flight astronauts once the Orbital Flight Test has been completed successfully.

One of those is SpaceX, Elon Musk's company, which will launch Crew Dragon, while the other is Boeing's Starliner project. Those were Behnken, Boe, Hurley and Williams.

Trump just made two problematic admissions about the Trump Tower meeting
Donald Jr initially said in a statement to The New York Times that the meeting was "primarily" about American adoptions of Russian children.

In 2014, SpaceX and Boeing received contracts for $2.6 billion and $4.2 billion, respectively, to develop so-called space taxis that can ferry astronauts to and from the space station.

NASA's partners on the International Space Station program - the Russian space agency Roscosmos, the European Space Agency, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, and the Canadian Space Agency - are expected to assign members of their own astronaut corps to the CST-100 and Crew Dragon crew rotation flights. He is a retired Navy captain, who piloted space shuttle Atlantis for STS-115, and commanded shuttle Endeavour on STS-126 and Atlantis for the final flight of the Space Shuttle Program, STS-135. American astronauts have still traveled to space, but they've used Russia's Soyuz spacecraft at a cost of about $80 million per seat. The crews will be the first to venture into the final frontier from Florida on American-made ships since 2011.

"I'm just really excited that we're going to take these spacecraft and show them off to our global partners", said Williams.

Victor Glover: Glover was selected as an astronaut in 2013 after a career in the Navy as a test pilot. "This is a test pilot's dream". Since then, the space agency has turned to private space firms, like SpaceX, to oversee cargo runs to the ISS, while sending U.S. astronauts there on Russian rockets. Both vehicles are reusable. By naming crews, NASA is signaling its belief that these astronauts will fly sometime soon.

Those launch targets may change.

While NASA didn't require uncrewed flight tests, both companies will be shooting them off to the ISS anyway, because you can never be too positive things won't glitch once you're 1,200 miles beyond Earth's atmosphere. The first crewed flights would then follow by the end of 2018.

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