The following is an excerpt from Jonathan Amos | August 3, 2018 | BBC.com |
Nasa has named the astronauts who will fly the first missions into space on commercially provided rockets and capsules, starting next year.
The nine individuals will go up on systems developed by - and contracted from - the Boeing and SpaceX firms.
Most have previous experience in orbit. Among them are the commander and pilot of the final shuttle mission in 2011.
For the past seven years, Russian rockets have been the only way to get people into orbit.
Nasa Administrator Jim Bridenstine introduced the astronauts during a ceremony at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.
"For the first time since 2011, we are on the brink of launching American astronauts on American rockets from American soil," he told the enthusiastic audience.
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