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Boeing and SpaceX will shuttle American astronauts to the ISS

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There had been rumors of NASA awarding Boeing a big contract for its Commercial Crew Program, and it turns out that the claims were true -- and then some. The agency has just announced that both Boeing's CST-100 capsule and SpaceX's Dragon V2 will ferry American astronauts to the International Space Station from 2017 onward. Most of the funding ($4.2 billion) will go to Boeing's entry, but the SpaceX deal is still pretty hefty at $2.6 billion. Once both vehicles are certified and tested, they'll participate in manned scientific missions (up to six each) and serve as lifeboats in emergencies. Unfortunately, Sierra Nevada's aircraft-like Dream Chaser isn't part of the picture. It's ultimately a good day for space travel, but those hoping for a Space Shuttle-like design will be disappointed.

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