On February 7, the first mission to the International Space Station by a privately built and operated spacecraft will lift off; this has been announced by NASA.
The builder and manager of this craft is SpaceX, techbiz visionary Elon Musk’s new company. This craft will be made with Dragon capsule and Falcon 9 rocket that use to deliver supplies to the International Space Station.
In fact, the craft lift by Dragon and the Falcon 9 which all are modern designs as compare to rockets that have been used since 1970. Along this operating cost of Falcon 9 is expected to be low which lifts it.
Not as the previous usage in which once the work is done by Dragon, then it throw away into atmosphere to burn up. But now, Dragons splash down by parachute into the ocean.
However excessive use of Dragon to carry astronauts as well as cargo, the Musk and SpaceX also have plans and less openly acknowledged schemes to build a super heavy lift stack to rival the Saturn Vs of yesteryear. Doing this, it would be a direct competition with the Space Launch System which planned by NASA and ULA.
While announcing the launch date, NASA honcho William Gerstenmaier said, “We look forward to a successful mission, who will open up a new era in commercial cargo delivery for this international orbiting laboratory.”
“There is still a significant amount of critical work to be completed before launch, but the teams have a sound plan to complete it and are prepared for unexpected challenges. As with all launches, we will adjust the launch date as needed to gain sufficient understanding of test and analysis results to ensure safety and mission success,” he added.
Moreover, SpaceX builds its craft with just 1500 employees and generally achieving much lower running costs than the traditional space launch arrangement in the USA.
Meanwhile, the partnership between the government and private industry may result to new capabilities and a large return on investment.