NASA reviews flight data to space station with 9 Astronauts
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Washington sources reported that Indian origin astronaut Sunita Williams is among the nine astronauts named by NASA on Friday for its first human spaceflight program from the US soil since the retirement of the space shuttle in 2011. Accordingly the astronauts will fly on the spacecraft developed by Elon Musk owned SpaceX’s Crew Dragon and global aviation firm Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner, as part of the US space agency’s Commercial Crew programme to send humans to the ISS on private US spacecraft.
Meanwhile Williams has been named for the Boeing program to the ISS the first test flight scheduled to take place in the middle of 2019. NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said “For the first time since 2011, we are on the brink of launching American astronauts on American rockets from American soil”. He was born in Euclid (Ohio), Williams came to NASA from the Navy where she was a test pilot and rose to the rank of captain before retiring.
Furthermore since her selection as an astronaut in 1998, she has spent 322 days aboard the International Space Station (ISS) for Expeditions 14/15 and Expeditions 32/33, commanded the space station and performed seven spacewalks. The US space agency said in a statement “The men and women we assign to these first flights are at the forefront of this exciting new time for human spaceflight. It will be thrilling to see our astronauts lift off from American soil, and we can’t wait to see them aboard the ISS”.