Last week, space shuttle Atlantis stepped down on the Kennedy Space Centre, wrapping up NASA’s 30-year long, glorious space mission history. Now, as it adores the museum at the space centre, NASA is finalizing a deal with United Launch Alliance (ULA), which is a joint venture between Lockheed Martin and Boeing, to begin its tryst with commercial rocket launches sending astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS), a report in Physorg.com stated.
The Atlas V
In a bid to provide cost-friendly U.S. government missions to space, the usage of the Atlas V rocket is being considered. However, reports suggest that it will be a good four years before any of their plans on paper would materialize. Both the ULA and NASA would join forces, and then decide the best way to put the Atlas V to use. The Atlas V last took off on a mission on the 7th of May this year, on a missile satellite warning mission and completed the same successfully. By far, it has mostly been sent on missions pertaining to the US’s Defense Department.
The Atlas V is being preferred for the 100 percent success track record that it enjoys, making it a strong contender for other companies like Sierra Nevada Corp and Blue Origin for a buyout.