NASA may ask SpaceX to extend the duration of Crew Dragon test flight

NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley might pay longer on the International artificial satellite than originally planned after they ride SpaceX’s new human-rated Dragon artificial satellite into orbit on it’s initial crewed take a look at flight, an area agency official aforesaid Friday

A decision to increase the length of the Crew Dragon take a look at flight with Behnken and Hurley, selected Demo-2, is one in every of many choices into consideration to make sure the artificial satellite remains staffed with U.S. astronauts once NASA’s agreement to acquire seats on Russia’s Soyuz artificial satellite expires next year.

In an interview with CNN last week, NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine aforesaid the agency is additionally observing getting a lot of Soyuz seats from Roscosmos, the Russian area agency.

The final round-trip Soyuz seat procured by NASA can launch in March 2020 on the Soyuz MS-16 artificial satellite, a mission conjointly selected Soyuz 62S within the area station’s sequence of visiting vehicles. The trained worker flying in this seat has not been declared, but a U.S. traveler and a Japanese traveler are coaching to probably fly a Soyuz mission in early 2020.

NASA arranges crew transportation to and from the artificial satellite for U.S. astronauts and crew members from the Area Agency, the Canadian area Agency, and therefore the Japan part Exploration Agency.

“Our last seat — Soyuz seat — we’ve got on a contract that we’ve got associate degree agreement with Roscosmos is, in fact, 62S, aforesaid church Shireman, NASA’s artificial satellite program manager, during a group discussion Fri. “It launches in March of next year, and possibly can come within the 2019 timeframe, roughly a year from currently. That’s the last one we’ve got on contract.”