NASA wouldn't be breaking new ground if the agency did go with a private rocket for the upcoming test flight of its Orion crew capsule.
NASA is the space agency run by the United States to oversee American space exploration, research and technology. NASA, or the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, was founded in 1958 as a civilian agency for U.S. space exploration. Prior to 1958, the agency's progenitor was known as the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics. NASA develops, builds and launches missions to study the Earth, moon and sun, as well as the entire solar system and beyond. The agency has its headquarters in Washington D.C., with major centers in Florida (the Kennedy Space Center for launches) and Houston (the Johnson Space Center, home of the astronaut corps). Other centers are spread across the country for scientific research, test flights and spacecraft manufacturing. NASA's current chief is Administrator Jim Bridenstine, who is leading the agency's mission of returning astronauts to the moon and sending them on to Mars. See the latest NASA news.
NASA is considering launching its Orion crew capsule on a commercial rocket rather than the Space Launch System, the agency's own megarocket that is currently under development.
The director of NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center said March 5 that the agency is "reassessing" the 2020 launch date for the first flight of its Space Launch System.
From the mighty Saturn 5 to NASA's new Space Launch System, see how the biggest rockets on Earth compare.
NASA is powering ahead with assembly of its Orion crew capsule for the first full-scale test flight of the new system, thanks to a special delivery from the European Space Agency (ESA).
Need a virtual vacation? NASA has you covered, thanks to a well-timed test procedure for their Orion crew capsule.
NASA set off for the Pacific Ocean to test recovery procedures for the agency's Orion capsule, which is destined to carry humans to the moon and beyond.
On Oct. 15, NASA tested the water-deluge system at Launch Complex 39B at Florida's Kennedy Space Center, and it was a sight to behold.
With NASA's decision to continue using an interim upper stage for additional flights of the Space Launch System, Boeing is working on changes to both that stage and a more powerful upper stage.
The first European-built service module for NASA's Orion spacecraft is finally ready to be shipped to the United States for final preparations before a scheduled mid-2020 launch.
Today (Oct. 3), aerospace giant Lockheed Martin revealed its concept for a reusable, single-stage spaceship capable of ferrying four astronauts between lunar orbit and the surface of the moon.
NASA will run its final parachute test for the Orion spacecraft on Sept. 12 as the agency readies Orion for its first uncrewed mission around the moon.
Here's a primer on the Gateway, the moon-orbiting space station that NASA plans to start building in the next half-decade.
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