Headed to the International Space Station, billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk’s a private space capsule Dragon was flew on Tuesday just after 10 minutes of the Falcon9 rocket launch into the night sky for the space station’s orbit to line up with the launching pad.
Reports suggested that hard part of this mission is still to come, while Dragon was to fly about 1.5 miles underneath the space station for tests and to demonstrate its communication and navigation systems. It will dock Friday with its load of groceries and other supplies.
NASA hired SpaceX to deliver cargo and eventually astronauts to the orbital outpost and as fulfilling all required needs, SpaceX’s Dragon marked the first time a commercial spacecraft that sent in orbit and make a delivery for the space agency.
With this, a profit race had been started with several firms that expect more chances to make money in space, giving tough competition to Musk’s company. If Dragon go as per plan, SpaceX would begin a $1.6 billion contract to fly 12 cargo missions to the space station.
According to source, Orbital Sciences of Dulles, Va., the cargo-only business, Alliant Techsystems, Va., Boeing of Chicago and the most secretive of the companies, Blue Origin of Kent, Wash., is run by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos are in the line of competition with Space X to launch its cargo ship and wants to earn money, while some are not funded by NASA, and run in separate agency.
It has been said that scope of the private sector is likely to expand as NASA is looking private firms to take over flights to the space station with the now retired space shuttles and U.S. companies are vying for the opportunity, at least eight companies are there that looking to make money in space.
NASA’a aim to focus on flights on places like asteroids and Mars. By offering money and contracts to several companies to push them on their way, does not mean that they not have anything to do with NASA.
“This expanded role for the private sector will free up more of NASA’s resources to do what NASA does best tackle the most demanding technological challenges in space, including those of human spaceflight beyond low-Earth orbit”, a source said in a statement.
The idea is to “let private industry do what it does best and let NASA tackle the challenging task of pushing the boundary further,” NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver told reporters.
Moreover After this Dragon’s launch test that is “the spark that will ignite a flourishing commercial spaceflight marketplace,” SpaceX has a contract with NASA for a dozen delivery runs.