May 26, 2022

NASA recently placed a new order with SpaceX.

The agency said on Wednesday it had ordered six additional resupply missions from the company as part of the Commercial Resupply Service-2 (CRS-2) contract. NASA has also placed an order for six more missions with Northrop Grumman, another major ISS resupply service provider.

In 2016, NASA awarded resupply contracts through 2024 to SpaceX and Northrop. Sierra Nevada Corporation was the third supplier selected. CRS-2 guaranteed a minimum of six missions per supplier, with the option for NASA to order additional missions as needed. The agency said the maximum potential value of all three contracts is $14 billion, although NASA’s final cost will depend on the number of orders.

The order brings the total number of missions under CRS-2 to 32, including 14 missions at Northrop, 15 at SpaceX and three at Sierra.

SpaceX is already familiar with these flights. The company completed 20 resupply missions under the previous CRS contract, CRS-1. SpaceX’s total payment for these missions was $3.04 billion, or about $152 million per mission, according to NASA’s inspector general.

SpaceX has been using its Dragon cargo spacecraft and Falcon 9 rocket to deliver cargo to the ISS, and has done so since it conducted its first resupply mission at the station in 2012. After leaving Earth, Dragon joins the ISS and autonomously docks to the station.

SpaceX also operates manned flights to the ISS using its Crew Dragon capsule.

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