Commercial Human ISS Flight Funds Backed
The Obama administration has cleared NASA to use $150 million of the $1 billion in economic stimulus package funding it will receive this year to advance possible commercial human spaceflight to the International Space Station (ISS).
Acting Administrator Christopher Scolese told the House Appropriations subcommittee that funds NASA that the agency’s fiscal 2009 operating plan includes $400 million in stimulus funding for the agency’s exploration activities, including the $150 million for what is known as COTS D – human versions of the Commercial Orbital Transportation System vehicles under development with almost $500 million in NASA seed money.
The new effort will extend beyond the two COTS contractors – Orbital Sciences Corp. (OSC) and Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX) – to anyone who responds to a request for information (RFI) on commercial crew delivery to the station, Scolese said April 29.
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