Year in PReview: 2014 will be a crucial year for commercial crew

SNC’s Dream Chaser engineering test article (ETA) moments before landing at Edwards Air Force Base on October 26. The image is a still from a video released by the company on October 29; the video cuts off before the actual landing but the missing left main gear is evident in the video. (credit: SNC)

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Updates on commercial crew development

Last week NASA hosted a news briefing allowing the agency and the four companies that have Commercial Crew Development 2 (CCDev-2) and/or Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCap) funded awards to provide updates on their efforts. Much of the media attention from the briefing focused on news that the companies are planning test flights of their [...]

Fearing it’s falling behind, Boeing may ramp up commercial crew investment

In the latest round of awards in NASA’s commercial crew program, Boeing won the largest amount of money, $460 million, versus SpaceX’s $440 million and Sierra Nevada’s $212 million. NASA officials noted at the time that the dollar values in the awards were not intended to be a ranking of the companies, but it was [...]

Boeing looks to leverage its broader capabilities and heritage

Illustration of Boeing’s proposed CST-100 commercial crew capsule.

[ Second in a series of posts about the companies that won and lost in NASA's Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCap) competition ]

Boeing received the largest of the three CCiCap awards, at $460 million. That award covers 19 milestones and culminates in April 2014 with [...]

Boeing, Sierra Nevada, and SpaceX win CCiCap awards

NASA announced this morning that, as reported last night, Boeing, Sierra Nevada Corporation, and SpaceX have all received funded Space Act Agreements for the Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCap) phase of the agency’s commercila crew efforts. Boeing and SpaceX appear to have won the two “full” awards, receiving $460 million and $440 millon respectively, while [...]

For the CCiCap losers, what’s next?

On Friday morning NASA will announce the winners of the Commercial Crew Integrated Capability, or CCiCap, awards, the next phase of the agency’s commercial crew program. Already some news is leaking out about the awardees: both the Wall Street Journal and NBCNews.com report that Boeing, Sierra Nevada, and SpaceX will receive funded awards, with apparently [...]

NASA plans to announce commercial crew awards next month

The administrator of NASA said Monday he expects the space agency to announce multiple awards for the next round of its commercial crew development effort by the middle of next month.

Speaking in a media telecon Monday morning, NASA administrator Charles Bolden said he expected the awards to be announced “no later than, say, mid-July [...]

Boeing on test pilots, FAR-vs-SAA, and more

Last Thursday, as most expected, Boeing announced it had selected United Launch Alliance’s Atlas 5 rocket to launch its CST-100 commercial crew vehicle, at least for a series of three test flights in 2015. (John Elbon, Boeing’s program manager for the CST-100, said that the company would recompete launches for the operational CST-100 missions, if [...]

Decision day for CST-100′s ride to orbit

Illustration of Boeing's proposed CST-100 commercial crew capsule.

Since unveiling its plans for developing a commercial crew spacecraft, Boeing has emphasized that its CST-100 spacecraft was launch vehicle agnostic: it could launch on an Atlas 5, Delta 4, or Falcon 9. And when ATK announced its plans in February for the Liberty launch vehicle, [...]

Assessing the CCDev-2 losers

Monday afternoon NASA announced the award of nearly $270 million to four companies for the second round of the Commercial Crew Development (CCDev-2) program. The four winners, and their awards, are:

Blue Origin: $22 million Boeing: $92.3 million Sierra Nevada Corporation: $80 million SpaceX: $75 million

Those companies will work on their vehicle concepts under [...]