Sunday, 21 October, 2018

SpaceX Will Be Ready to Transport Humans in April 2019, NASA Estimates

NASA still hasn’t decided on a spacesuit for future missions, and it’s getting kind of silly NASA Announces Boeing and Space Crews
Kristen Harrington | 03 August, 2018, 03:07

Tomorrow, NASA will announce the chosen crew for the first Commercial Crew flights and probably add more information on Boeing's and SpaceX flights.

The agency released the revised schedule with little fanfare ahead of a planned August 3 announcement at the Johnson Space Center of the astronauts that will fly the two companies' crewed demonstration missions, as well as on the first post-certification, or operational, missions by each company.

In a blog post, NASA said SpaceX plans to launch its Crew Dragon spacecraft on an unpiloted test flight in November.

Once the uncrewed flight tests are complete and the data reviews have validated the spacecraft systems, NASA astronauts will have their first opportunity to fly in the spacecraft. Experts believe that with the latest complications, the first uncrewed flight test will take place at the end of 2018 - the beginning in 2019 and the manned flight test will take place in mid-2019.

Before the engine problem, Boeing was planning to start the tests this year, but they had to change the schedule, so it is possible that both tests will start in 2019. Fully 43 percent of respondents said the climate should be NASA's "top priority".

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SAVE THE DATE. On Thursday, NASA announced that SpaceX's Crew Dragon (its spacecraft created to transport astronauts) will be ready for an uncrewed test in November 2018 and a crewed test in April 2019.

Boeing has also developed a state-of-the-art spacecraft, the Crew Space Transportation (CST)-100 Starliner.

The Crew Dragon capsule is a next-generation spacecraft created to carry humans to ISS and other destinations, according to SpaceX.

A second round of test flights - manned flights - will follow the inaugural flights.

If the feed doesn't load for any reason, you can also try to watch via YouTube, Ustream, or the space agency's NASA TV website.

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The revised schedule is not surprising given that the space community had widely expected delays of at least several months by both companies.

Congress ultimately boosted NASA's overall budget for the fiscal year that began on October 1 to almost $20.7 billion, part of a defense spending binge that also benefited nondefense projects.

NASA is anxious for the Boeing and SpaceX commercial crew systems to begin operations because its access to Russia's Soyuz spacecraft ends next year.

ISS OR BUST. This delayed timeframe isn't entirely unexpected. "If NASA does not develop options for ensuring access to the ISS in the event of further Commercial Crew delays, it will not be able to ensure that the US policy goal and objective for the ISS will be met", the report argued.

Among the options being considered by NASA is to use the crewed flight test as a crew rotation flight by adding a third astronaut to the mission and extending its stay from two weeks to as long as six months.

Fed keeps interest rates unchanged, says USA economy 'strong'
The unemployment rate, now at 4.0 percent, is lower than the level seen sustainable by Fed policymakers. The committee noted in the statement that both headline and core inflation "remain near 2 per cent".

Mulholland said the Atlas V launch vehicle for the mission is launch-ready and should ship to Florida before the end of this year.

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