Sunday, May 28, 2023

NASA Selects Companies to Develop Commercial Destinations in Space

NASA has signed agreements with three U.S. companies to develop designs of space stations and other commercial destinations in space. The agreements are part of the agency’s efforts to enable a robust, American-led commercial economy in low-Earth orbit.

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The total estimated award amount for all three funded Space Act Agreements is $415.6 million. The companies that received awards are:

  • Blue Origin of Kent, Washington, for $130 million
  • Nanoracks LLC, of Houston for $160 million
  • Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation of Dulles, Virginia, for $125.6 million

    NASA seeks to maintain an uninterrupted U.S. presence in low-Earth orbit by transitioning from the International Space Station to other platforms. These awards will stimulate U.S. private sector development of commercial, independent space stations that will be available to both government and private-sector customers.

“Building on our successful initiatives to partner with private industry to deliver cargo, and now our NASA astronauts, to the International Space Station, NASA is once again leading the way to commercialize space activities,” said NASA Administrator Bill Nelson. “With commercial companies now providing transportation to low-Earth orbit in place, we are partnering with U.S. companies to develop the space destinations where people can visit, live, and work, enabling NASA to continue forging a path in space for the benefit of humanity while fostering commercial activity in space.”

Participants include:

Phil McAlister, director, commercial spaceflight, NASA Headquarters in Washington
Angela Hart, manager, of NASA’s commercial low-Earth orbit development program at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston
Brent Sherwood, senior vice president of advanced development programs, Blue Origin, and Dr. Janet Kavandi, former NASA astronaut and Sierra Space president
Jeffrey Manber, president of international and space stations for Voyager Space and chairman of the board at Nanoracks
Rick Mastracchio, director of business development for human exploration, Northrop Grumman

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