Re: Dream Chaser

Message posted by Peter Merlin on February 05, 2013 at 8:58:30 PST:

NASA's National Day of Remembrance included the crews of Apollo 1, Challenger, Columbia, and Maj. Mike Adams who died in the crash of an X-15. Their sacrifices are not forgotten.

It is too bad that the U.S. does not currently have an operational manned spacecraft, but the promised shuttle replacement never materialized. Now, NASA is aiming to get out of the business of being a spacecraft operator and instead will contract for commercial space transportation for humans, just as the agency already does with expendable satellite launch vehicles. It is not a new model, merely a new application.

In the interim, NASA has to contract with the Russians for launch services to send crews to the International Space Station until a domestic carrier becomes available. At least the Russians can offer the proven capabilities of the Soyuz spacecraft, a true workhorse with a legacy launch vehicle. The cost has jumped from $20 million to $65 million over the past decade due to increased demand and the need to subsidize construction of additional vehicles. If U.S. commercial launch providers can offer services at a lower rate, then they will be in a position to compete in the new market.

In Reply to: Re: Dream Chaser posted by Gregos on February 02, 2013 at 23:02:33 PST:


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