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MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The United States is expected to ship its first US-made spacecraft to the International Space Station instead of the Soyuz manufactured in Russia (ISS) after receiving NASA certification in May 2020, an aerospace industry spokesman said on Monday.
NASA has paid Russia seats on the Soyuz spacecraft since the US Space Shuttle was decommissioned in 2011, commissioning Boeing and Space X for a total of up to $ 6.8 billion with crew development Transport systems and carry out initial missions to the orbital laboratory as part of its commercial crew program.
Regardless of whether Space X's Crew Dragon or Boeing's Starliner, NASA must first certify the safety of the spacecraft for manned space flight. Initially, both parties had planned the certification for 2017, now no one should be ready at the end of 2019 at the earliest.
Space X tested Crew Dragon in an unmanned flight to the ISS in March. The first flight with crew on board will take place on 15 November. On May 27, NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley arrived in Zvyozdny Gorodok, Russia, to train on their Crew Dragon demonstration flight before taking on an unmanned test flight for Starliner in August. The first manned mission was originally scheduled for August, but was postponed to November. The company also announced plans to extend the duration of Starliner's first manned flight to the ISS, but did not disclose any further details.