For many years Russia helps NASA to get their astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS). But now SpaceX would make this stop. As it is building the technology slowly.
It is important to note that in 2014, the USA government gave a contract deal to SpaceX (Elon Musk’s aerospace company). They paid the company to build a spacecraft that could carry American astronauts into the orbit. The deal was worth $2.6 billion. The government also made the same agreement with the company Boeing, which worth $4.2 billion.
However, both of these projects have delayed their launch dates many times due to some problems. But finally, we can expect a certain amount of processing time and then a scheduled launch date.
What’s the date?
So, on Thursday NASA announced the much-needed spacecraft will be ready for a trip testing without astronauts in November this year. The name of this spacecraft is SpaceX’s Crew Dragon. Also, the proper testing with astronauts will be in April next year. Apart from this, CST-100 Starliner, spacecraft by Boeing, will be ready for a ‘without astronauts’ test in late 2018 or early 2019. Following this, the ‘with astronauts’ test will get scheduled to mid-2019; as per stated by NASA.
After all these tests, both the space vehicles will go through a process of certification. If the spacecraft get certificates and pass all other required tests, then they will attain their final target. The target is to transport American astronauts to the ISS.
Although, According to a report by the Government Accounting Office (GAO), an independent agency which governs federal expenses for Congress, reveals some important data. It says that SpaceX will probably get its certificate in February 2020. It also says the Boeing will somehow pass the process a month earlier. Well! The dates are not that unexpecting.
Currently, astronauts travel to ISS via Russian spacecraft named Soyuz, however, the contract is going to end in November 2019. Therefore, the companies are under a lot of pressure to complete these projects as soon as possible. As NASA would not have any way to ride up its astronauts after November 2019. Hoping to see the new spacecraft soon!