NASA To Spend Over $1 Billion For New Manned Spacecraft Development
Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCap) is the program under which three agencies are to develop the next generation of space launch systems for NASA in five following years. The systems are to send astronauts to space. And the funding recipients are Boeing ($460 mln), SpaceX ($440 mln), and Sierra Nevada Corporation ($212.5 mln). The space shuttle has made its last flight to the orbit over a year ago, and SpaceX and Orbital Sciences are being funded by the commercial cargo program and have already sent payloads to the International Space Station. SpaceX has demonstrated their ability to deliver cargo to ISS last May, and is going to fulfill regular cargo flights on the $1.6 billion contract, showing that Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon spacecraft have been developed thinking of human space flights. Meanwhile, Boeing has been developing its capsule-like CST-100 that has undergone parachute drop tests from a helicopter. And Sierra Nevada has developed their Dream Chaser with lifting body design landing like an airplane, alike with the space shuttle orbiter.