View Full Version : SpaceX, Orbital Sciences Awarded ISS Re-supply Contract

2008-Dec-24, 04:40 AM
Two upstart commercial space companies have been awarded contracts by NASA for commercial cargo resupply services to the International Space Station. SpaceX, also known as Space Exploration Technologies received a contract for $1.6 billion while Orbital Sciences Corp. of Dulles, Va. has a contract valued at $1.9 billion. NASA has ordered 12 flights [...]

More... (http://www.universetoday.com/2008/12/23/spacex-orbital-sciences-awarded-iss-re-supply-contract/)

2008-Dec-25, 07:15 PM
On the one hand I'm glad this may turn into a way to bridge the gap between the shuttle's retirement and the start of Constellation. However, giving control of space access to private businesses is a little unsettling. If one or both of these companies were authorized to carry NASA astronauts to the ISS, it would mean that the government was dependent on one or two corporations for access to space.

Even if it's only for five years, it sets a bad precedent. And if some new appeal to the ghost of Ronald Reagan gets NASA's budget for new programs slashed in the next five years, it will only be private business in space. I wouldn't be surprised if the mere existence of a private sector alternative would be reason enough for some in congress to gut NASA entirely.

Or, maybe I'm overreacting. But it doesn't sit right with me.