Sunita Williams among 9 astronauts for NASA’s new private space flight programme

James Marshall
August 5, 2018

He retired from NASA after commanding the final shuttle mission in 2011, and eventually joined Boeing to help develop Starliner.

NASA has named the astronauts chosen to fly on commercial spacecraft made by Boeing and SpaceX to and from the International Space Station, the research laboratory that orbits around Earth.

"Today, our country's dreams of greater achievements in space are within our grasp". Eric Boe, retired Navy Capt. It will be led by Robert Behnken, a flight test engineer and Air Force colonel, who flew on Endeavour twice and has completed more than 37 hours of spacewalks spread across six individual excursions.

Ferguson grew up in a rowhouse on Amity Road in Northeast Philadelphia, playing wire ball and stickball and delivering the Inquirer for pocket money, he said in a 2005 Inquirer article. He returns to NASA after retiring in 2011.

Williams has been named for the Boeing programme to the ISS - the first test flight scheduled to take place in the middle of 2019. In a call with reporters this week, John Mulholland, Boeing's program manager, said that several of the valves failed to fully close, resulting in a propellant leak.

The Starliner will launch aboard an Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

A man from St. Ann is headed into space. The test flight with crew is scheduled for mid-2019. "Space flight is about people". "Our commitment has always been to provide NASA and those crews the highest level of mission assurance", he said in the statement.

"We are on the brink of launching American astronauts on American rockets from American soil", said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine during the "Launch America" announcement. Each ship requires two crewed test launches before NASA will certify it for routine flight.

Eric Boe: Boe was born in Florida and grew up in Atlanta.

Suni Williams: Williams was chosen as an astronaut in 1998 after a career in the Navy. He has a master's degree in physics and is a US Navy test pilot who has served in more than 20 combat missions. It'll be his first spaceflight, though he has a wide range of experience with combat missions and testing aircraft.

Sunita Williams was born in Euclid, Ohio, but considers Needham, Massachusetts, her hometown. Mr. Hopkins logged 166 days aboard the space station in 2014.

Victor Glover is from Pomona, California. As a naval aviator, she flew combat missions during operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom before becoming a naval test pilot.

The Pasadena native accumulated almost 3,000 hours of flying time in more than 40 aircraft, with 400 carrier landings and 24 combat missions. He was selected as part of the 2013 astronaut candidate class, and this will be his first spaceflight.

Mike Hopkins: Hopkins was raised on a farm near Richland, Missouri, and he has a master's in aerospace engineering. While in the Air Force, he flew in 55 combat missions over Iraq.

"Rockets are fun. I'll be ready, I can't wait", Williams said in an interview posted Friday on the International Space Station Facebook page. Both vehicles were developed in cooperation with NASA to deliver crew members to and from the orbiting laboratory. The delays could even result in a gap in US access to the space station, because NASA has contracted for seats on Soyuz only through November 2019, the report found.

Bridenstine also introduced the crews of the first missions to the International Space Station by each new craft, which will follow the test flights.

NASA has always been working on developing its commercial crew programme while it can focus on its space exploration projects, the report added. His Space Policy Directive 2, signed in May, was aimed at streamlining regulations for commercial space industry.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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