NASA has given Elon Musk’s SpaceX six additional flights to the International Space Station (ISS) under Commercial Resupply Services-2 (CRS-2) agreements for up to $14 billion. Northrop Grumman, a US defense contractor, has also secured contracts for six flights to the spaceship and will divide the contract money with SpaceX. This follows after NASA just awarded SpaceX a $3.49 billion deal for astronaut transport to the International Space Station (ISS) underneath the Commercial Crew Transportation Capability program. Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX, has stated that his business can launch a rocket quicker than Russia that can destroy them, demonstrating his assurance in the company’s capabilities. Musk was questioned about Russia aiming satellites, notably his Starlink devices, in a conversation with Axel Springer CEO Mathias Dopfner, to which he replied, “It is difficult to knock out Starlink since there are 2000 satellites. This implies a large number of anti-satellite missiles “according to Business Insider.
According to NASA, the contracts provided for crew and cargo replenishment flights to the space station are to be continued until 2026. NASA has also proposed CRS-2 licenses to these two businesses, along with Sierra Space, in 2016. NASA said in a report that four years later, in October 2020, it has scheduled two further operations from Northrop Grumman and three from SpaceX. SpaceX has been supplying the International Space Station with commodities using its cargo Dragon spacecraft and Falcon 9 rocket since the first supply run to the outpost in 2012.
The new step brings the total number of CRS-2 flights to 32, with 14 for Northrop, 15 for SpaceX, and three for Sierra Nevada Corp., the program’s third sponsor. SpaceX is now quite experienced with these missions. Under a prior CRS contract, CRS-1, the firm performed 20 supply operations. The final amount to SpaceX for those missions was $3.04 billion, or about $152 million per mission, as per NASA’s oversight committee. Because of the emphasis on quality, as well as the complexities involved of reaching space, none of this will be inexpensive. However, for commercial space flight to take off, it must not be nearly as expensive as NASA’s current operations.