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Even with very little description I learned a lot from these pictures.
I wonder if NASA really had access to time travel, stargates, mars bases etc, would they really go to all this trouble just to get a few miles into space.
Originally posted by Arbitrageur
Wow fantastic pictures, just in time for the shuttle to be put out to pasture. The last planned shuttle mission is Sept 16 2010, I wonder if there will be any more after that?
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration said Tuesday it awarded contracts to two closely-held commercial space companies to provide resupply services to the International Space Station. The first-ever NASA commercial space freight contracts were awarded to Orbital Sciences Corp. (ORB 19.12, +0.02, +0.11%) and Space Exploration Technologies of Hawthorne, Calif. Under the contracts, NASA ordered eight flights valued at about $1.9 billion from Orbital and 12 flights valued at about $1.6 billion from SpaceX. The contracts are effective from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2016, and are meant to fill the gap between the retirement of the Space Shuttle in 2010 and a next-generation launch vehicle. The contracts require each company to transport at least 20 metric tons of cargo to the space station, NASA said.
Payloads follow one of two functional flows: l) those that are installed horizontally into the payload bay at the Orbiter Processing Facility (OPF), and 2) those that are installed vertically into the payload bay at the launch pad.