But the $18 million to Boeing is earmarked for development of a space transportation system that includes a seven-person crew capsule with cargo capabilities. The crew module would be designed for short-duration trips to destinations in low Earth orbit, including the International Space Station and new orbital habitats like the Orbital Space Complex being designed by Bigelow Aerospace, which is part of Boeing's CCDev team.
The first spacecraft produced by Bigelow is the Genesis I inflatable satellite, which launched in July 2006.
While Genesis I is actively transmitting images, video, and data to Bigelow, the company has bigger things in mind: it says that the 14-foot subscale technology demonstrator "represents the first expandable space habitat technology on orbit" and, in a carefully couched turn of phrase, "likely represented the lowest-cost mission of its kind in the history of aerospace."
February 6, 2010 11:00 AM PST
Photo by: Bigelow Aerospace
| Caption by: Jonathan Skillings
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