(Image Source: NASA)
On August 3rd, NASA officially named the astronauts who will fly on the SpaceX and Boeing crew modules destined for the International Space Station. This is a tremendously important step, as it is allowing the US to reclaim their own access to space instead of relying on Russian launch capability as it has since 2011 when the Shuttle was officially mothballed.
On the SpaceX Crew Dragon:
- (test flight) Col. Bob Behnken of the Air Force
- (test flight) Doug Hurley, a retired Marine Corps colonel
- (ISS) Mike Hopkins, Air Force colonel
- (ISS) Victor Glover, Navy commander
On the Boeing CST-100 Starliner:
- (test flight) Eric Boe, a former space shuttle pilot who retired from the Air Force
- (test flight) Christopher Ferguson, a Boeing astronaut who left NASA in 2011
- (test flight) Lt. Col. Nicole Mann of the Marine Corps
- (ISS) Williams, a retired Navy captain
- (ISS) Cmdr. Josh Cassada of the Navy
The test flights will be here before we know it, with uncrewed flights of the new modules scheduled for late 2018, and the first human test flights slated for mid-2019.