NASA announces new astronaut class

NASA will name 1st astronauts to fly commercial spacecraft to International Space Station

NASA will name 1st astronauts to fly commercial spacecraft to International Space Station

Their voyages are scheduled to begin next year, and they would be the first American astronauts to launch from USA soil since 2011.

"Space has transformed the American way of life", NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said during the event. "Today's announcement advances our great American vision and strengthens the nation's leadership in space".

The astronauts assigned to crew the first flight tests and missions of the Boeing CST-100 Starliner and SpaceX Crew Dragon acknowledge the media upon introduction at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas, U.S., August 3, 2018. NASA worked closely with the companies to engineer both spacecraft.

This will be the first space shuttle launches from the United States since it retired its space shuttle in 2011.

Eric Boe was born in Miami and grew up in Atlanta.

Doug Hurley: Hurley came to NASA from the Marine Corps in 2000.

In a recent report, the Government Accountability Office said that further delays in NASA's "Commercial Crew" program could "disrupt access" to the space station, which would be an enormous embarrassment for NASA after investing about $100 billion to build and operate it.

Ferguson grew up in a rowhouse on Amity Road in Northeast Philadelphia, playing wire ball and stickball and delivering the Inquirer for pocket money, he said in a 2005 Inquirer article.

Williams, 52, is a 1983 graduate of Needham High School who went on to the US Naval Academy and served in the Navy, where she was a test pilot before retiring as a captain and joining NASA in 1998.

And astronauts will fly on Boeing's CST-100 Starliner sometime after that, in the middle of 2019.

After announcing the crews, Bridenstine engaged in a largely lighthearted question-and-answer session with the selected astronauts, who expressed their delight in being selected and anticipation in flying on these next-generation vehicles. It will be Mr. Glover's first time in space.

A man from St. Ann is headed into space. He has a doctorate in engineering and is a flight test engineer and colonel in the Air Force.

Douglas Hurley calls Apalachin, New York, his hometown. Among them are the commander and pilot of the final shuttle mission in 2011. But it had been working to resolve an issue with its second stage that caused one of its Falcon 9 rockets to explode while it was being fueled ahead of an engine test.

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The commercial flights will mark the return of crew launches to the USA, which has not seen humans lift off for space since the end of the iconic space shuttle program seven years ago.

VICE News spoke with Dennis Stone, one of the founding members of NASA's commercial investment program, to hear the story behind the agency's success in backing private spaceflight.

Josh Cassada grew up in White Bear Lake, Minnesota. Therefore, it's essential that Crew Dragon and Starliner be ready for operational flights by the 2020 deadline. He was selected as an astronaut in 2013.

When you think about who's in charge of cutting-edge spaceflight in 2018, SpaceX is probably the first name that comes to mind. Eric Boe, retired Navy Capt.

Bob Behnken: Behnken was chosen as an astronaut in 2000 and has been to space twice on two shuttle missions.

Victor Glover is from Pomona, California.

Williams said in Friday's interview that the new mission was "a test pilot's dream". He made 400 carrier landings and flew 24 combat missions. While she was there in 2007, she completed the Boston Marathon - on a treadmill - in 4 hours 24 minutes, marking the first time an entrant had finished the race from orbit.

Michael Hopkins was born in Lebanon, Missouri, and grew up on a farm near Richland, Missouri. Each test flight will provide data on the performance of the rockets, spacecraft, ground systems, and operations to ensure the systems are safe to fly astronauts.

Hopkins had previously spent 166 days on the International Space Station, and conducted two spacewalks.

Additional crew members will be assigned by NASA's worldwide partners at a later date. NASA picked Crew Dragon and Starliner to replace the space shuttle for ISS transportation back in 2014.

The former Yellow Jacket has been working with both companies since 2015, developing and testing spacecraft that will eventually launch Americans into space from US soil for the first time since the shuttle program ended in 2011.

Mr. Behnken, Mr. Hurley, Mr. Boe and Ms. Mann are NASA's first astronauts to be named to the test flights of new USA spacecraft since the March 1978 announcement of the space shuttle's first orbital flight test crews.

But actually, NASA had a lot to do with getting America's private space industry off the ground in the first place.

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