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NASA will pay the Russian space agency $ 90 million for a seat on the rocket, despite the launch of SpaceX

NASA plans to pay the Russian space agency $ 90 million for a seat on the Soyuz rocket to take a US astronaut to the ISS, despite the launch of SpaceX on May 30

  • NASA made a $ 90 million deal with Roscomos for a seat on a Russian missile
  • The chair is for astronaut Kate Rubins who will go to the ISS in October
  • The deal was closed on May 12 to ensure NASA was present on the ship
  • This was before the successful launch of NASA-SpaceX on May 30

NASA will pay the Russian space agency Roscomos $ 90 million to send one of its astronauts to the International Space Station this fall.

The payment was negotiated two weeks before the first mission of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 launched a team to the ISS from US soil – an achievement that would end the need to buy seats on foreign missiles.

However, the deal was completed on May 12 and was intended to “ensure that the agency remains committed to safe operations through a continued presence in the US” on the spaceship until commercial crew vehicles became regular services.

The seat is for NASA astronaut Kate Rubins, who will spend six months on the ISS as a flight engineer and join the crew of Expedition 63/64.

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NASA will pay the Russian space agency Roscomos $ 90 million to send one of its astronauts to the International Space Station this fall. The chair is for NASA astronaut Kate Rubins, who will spend six months on the ISS

NASA will pay the Russian space agency Roscomos $ 90 million to send one of its astronauts to the International Space Station this fall. The chair is for NASA astronaut Kate Rubins, who will spend six months on the ISS

NASA and SpaceX joined forces to return space travel to American soil.

Astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley left the Kennedy Space Center on May 30 in the Crew Dragon capsule on top of Falcon 9.

After 19 hours in space, the pair reached the ISS where they are now members of Expedition 63 Crew

The idea of ​​the Launch America mission was to eliminate the need for foreign space agencies to send NASA astronauts to the ship.

The payment was negotiated two weeks before the first mission of SpaceX's Falcon 9 (pictured) launched a US-based team to the ISS - an achievement that would end the need to buy seats on foreign missiles

The payment was negotiated two weeks before the first mission of SpaceX's Falcon 9 (pictured) launched a US-based team to the ISS - an achievement that would end the need to buy seats on foreign missiles

The payment was negotiated two weeks before the first mission of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 (pictured) launched a US-based team to the ISS – an achievement that would end the need to buy seats on foreign missiles

However, last fall, NASA revealed it had plans to purchase at least one more Soyuz seat as a backup plan should the Falcon 9 launch be delayed, SpaceNews reported.

In a media briefing after visiting the SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne, California, October 10, 2019, NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine said, “We need to make sure we don’t have a day without American astronauts at the International Space Station, so we stay working with Roscosmos, the space agency of Russia, to ensure that we have U.S. astronauts on the International Space Station as insurance for commercial crew. ‘

If everything goes according to plan, we may not need additional Soyuz chairs. ‘

“But we know something else: we usually don’t go to plan when it comes to these new development opportunities.”

NASA originally focused on 2017 when commercial flights were to begin, but both SpaceX and Boeing, which also develops rockets for NASA, experienced numerous production delays.

Bridenstine said during the briefing that the agency had not decided whether it would need another Soyuz seat, for a launch in the spring of 2021. “We want to see the level of risk we have to accept,” he said, citing commercial vehicles such as the Falcon 9.

“When Demo-2 comes home and we evaluate how it went, and we look at Crew-1, we look where we are and then we decide if we might need a second Soyuz [seat]”Then start negotiating,” he explained.

After 19 hours in space, Bob Behnken (second from right) and Doug Hurley (right) reached the ISS where they are now members of Expedition 63 Crew. The idea of ​​the Launch America mission was to eliminate the need for foreign space agencies to send NASA astronauts to the ship

After 19 hours in space, Bob Behnken (second from right) and Doug Hurley (right) reached the ISS where they are now members of Expedition 63 Crew. The idea of ​​the Launch America mission was to eliminate the need for foreign space agencies to send NASA astronauts to the ship

After 19 hours in space, Bob Behnken (second from right) and Doug Hurley (right) reached the ISS where they are now members of Expedition 63 Crew. The idea of ​​the Launch America mission was to eliminate the need for foreign space agencies to send NASA astronauts to the ship

Rubins will launch October 14 on the Soyuz MS-17 spacecraft of the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

She will conduct research using the Cold Atom Lab to study the use of laser-cooled atoms for future quantum sensors, and will work on a cardiovascular experiment that builds on research she completed during her previous mission in 2016.

During her first stay in the space station, Rubins became the first person to sequence DNA in space.

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