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NASA starts process to certify commercial suborbital vehicles for astronauts
Posted: Fri, Jun 26, 2020, 5:08 PM ET (2108 GMT)
New Shepard launch on NS-11 flight (Blue Origin) NASA is taking the first steps toward allowing astronauts and other agency personnel to fly on commercial suborbital vehicles. NASA announced Tuesday it created a "Suborbital Crew" office responsible for developing safety assessments of suborbital vehicles like Blue Origin's New Shepard and Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo. NASA also released a request for information Tuesday, seeking technical and cost information from suborbital providers. The agency, though, did not set a schedule for approving commercial vehicles and buying seats on them. NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced in March that NASA was interested in flying astronauts on commercial suborbital vehicles.
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