NASA Considering Making SpaceX Crewed Test Flight Mission Long-Duration Written 25 February 2020


NASA’s Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley pictured in front of a SpaceX Crew Dragon | NASA

Space News reports that NASA “is leaning increasingly towards making SpaceX’s crewed test flight to the International Space Station a long-duration mission, a move that could alleviate concerns about a lack of crew on the station later this year.” Originally, the Demo-2 mission was planned to be “no more than a couple” of weeks long. However, recently, “agency officials have suggested that they might extend the mission for months in order to have more astronauts on the station. The station’s crew will be at just three people, including one NASA astronaut, Chris Cassidy, starting in roughly mid-April.” NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine had said at a January 19 press conference, “We might look at making that first crew be a longer duration crew for the purpose of getting the maximum amount of capability out of the International Space Station” – though he “added that no decision had been made yet.” Besides the need for crew aboard the ISS, another factor which could impact mission length is the status of The Boeing Company’s Starliner.
Full Story (Space News)