NASA has concluded with SpaceX Elon musk (Elon Musk) the contract for five additional missions to deliver cargo to the International space station (ISS). According to Space News, the deal was done in December of last year, but about it it became known only now.
This means that SpaceX will perform a total of 20 flights with NASA cargo to the ISS, that is 8 flights more than originally planned. The additional cost of the contract is according to experts about $700 million.
The second supplier company NASA Orbital ATK has not received the order for additional spins. Under a contract with NASA, the company will perform 10 flights with cargo to the ISS. By the way, there is no explanation as to why SpaceX got a lot more volume of orders NASA than Orbital.
In addition to the supply of goods, SpaceX, starting in 2017, in accordance with another contract with the space Agency to deliver astronauts to the ISS and back to Earth.
Under the current contract, SpaceX and Orbital need to build space ships and deliver their cargo to the ISS. The first contracts with NASA, the company entered into in 2008. The period of the contracts expire in 2016, so NASA then extended their action until 2018. A NASA spokesman told Space News resource that the Agency can vary the number of starts and weight of cargo for the ISS, but each of the companies promised a high of $3.1 billion for the implementation of the programme of flights.
Both companies will continue to provide ISS cargo after the expiration of these contracts, as in January, NASA held a second round of contracts in which the agreement was also signed with the Sierra Nevada. These contracts cover the period from 2019 to 2024, the Financial side of the deals was not disclosed. NASA announced that each company will perform at least six runs, and the total value of the contracts will depend on the number of flights.