Space

June 18, 2012

NASA, FAA advance national goals in commercial human space transportation with landmark agreement

The Federal Aviation Administration and NASA have signed a historic agreement to coordinate standards for commercial space travel of government and non-government astronauts to and from low-Earth orbit and the International Space Station.

The two agencies will collaborate to expand efforts that provide a stable framework for the U.S. space industry, avoid conflicting requirements and multiple sets of standards, and advance both public and crew safety.

The Memorandum of Understanding signed by the two agencies establishes policy for operational missions to the space station. Commercial providers will be required to obtain a license from the FAA for public safety. Crew safety and mission assurance will be NASA’s responsibility. This approach allows both agencies to incorporate experience and lessons learned as progress is made.

“This important agreement between the FAA and NASA will advance our shared goals in commercial space travel,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. “Working together, we will assure clear, consistent standards for the industry.”

“This agreement is the next step in bringing the business of launching Americans back to American soil,” Charles Bolden, NASA administrator said. “We are fostering private sector innovation while maintaining high standards of safety and reliability to re-establish U.S.-crewed access to low-Earth orbit, in-sourcing work to American companies and encouraging the development of dynamic and cost-effective spaceflight capabilities built to last.”

“The Obama administration recognizes the scientific, technological and economic benefits of maintaining the United States’ leadership in space travel and exploration,” said FAA Acting Administrator Michael Huerta. “This agreement between the FAA and NASA continues and advances those vital national interests.”

NASA’s Commercial Crew Program aims to facilitate development of a U.S. commercial crew space transportation capability with the goal of achieving safe, reliable and cost-effective access to and from low-Earth orbit and the International Space Station. The policy established in the MOU clarifies for potential commercial providers the regulatory environment for operational missions to the orbiting laboratory. It also ensures that the two agencies will have compatible processes for ensuring public safety.

The FAA is responsible for regulating and licensing all U.S. private companies and individuals involved in commercial space transportation. To date, the FAA Office of Commercial Space Transportation has licensed 207 successful launches, including two non-orbital commercial human space flights in 2004 and the recent first launch to the ISS and re-entry of a non-manned commercial spacecraft.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
NASA photograph by David Olive

NASA completes successful battery of tests on composite cryotank

https://www.youtube.com/embed/qkGI6JeNY0E?enablejsapi=1&rel=0 NASA photograph by David Olive One of the largest composite cryotanks ever built recently completed a battery of tests at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Cen...
 
 
NASA/MSFC image

NASA completes key review of world’s most powerful rocket

NASA/MSFC image Artist concept of NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) 70-metric-ton configuration launching to space. SLS will be the most powerful rocket ever built for deep space missions, including to an asteroid and ultimate...
 
 
Image courtesy of NASA, Z. Levay, G. Bacon (STScI)

NASA telescopes uncover early construction of giant galaxy

Image courtesy of NASA, Z. Levay, G. Bacon (STScI) Artist impression of a firestorm of star birth deep inside core of young, growing elliptical galaxy. Astronomers have for the first time caught a glimpse of the earliest stages...
 

 

Lockheed Martin, Electro Optic Systems to establish space debris tracking site

Under a new strategic cooperation agreement, Lockheed Martin and Electro Optic Systems Pty Ltd are developing a new space object tracking site in Western Australia that will paint a more detailed picture of space debris for both government and commercial customers. The site will use a combination of lasers and sensitive optical systems like those...
 
 

NASA awards research facilities, engineering support services contract

NASA has awarded a contract for research facilities and engineering support services to InuTeq, LLC of Greenbelt, Maryland, in support of the Mission Information and Test Systems Directorate at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center, Edwards, Calif. This cost-plus-award-fee contract covers a one-year base period beginning Nov. 1, 2014 and four one-year options, and is valued...
 
 

NASA awards contract option on test, operations support contract

NASA has exercised the first option to extend the period of performance of its Test and Operations Support Contract with Jacobs Technology Inc. of Tullahoma, Tenn., to Sept. 30, 2016. Jacobs Technology Inc. will provide continued overall management and implementation of ground systems capabilities, flight hardware processing and launch operations in support of the International...
 




One Comment


  1. Dave

    Charles Bolden, NASA administrator said. “We are fostering private sector innovation while maintaining high standards of safety and reliability to re-establish U.S.-crewed access to low-Earth orbit, in-sourcing work to American companies and encouraging the development of dynamic and cost-effective spaceflight capabilities built to last.”

    Regretably NASA has never “fostered” anything. They have become the opposite of what everyone epected them to be. While standards are good they can always be used for bad. They continue to be pushed around by ATK and other vested interests.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>