If those flights are successful, the companies will be certified by NASA for crew rotation missions.
These pioneering flights to the International Space Station aboard commercially built crew capsules will be the first leaving United States soil to put people into orbit since the iconic space shuttle program ended in 2011.
During an announcement Friday to introduce the astronauts at Johnson Space Center in Texas, NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine said the "health of NASA and our space exploration program is as strong as it's ever been". NASA has been paying Russian Federation for flights launched from remote Kazakhstan to the ISS ever since, banking on its Commercial Crew Program to develop a cheaper, reliable and safe American-based alternative.
And astronauts will fly on Boeing's CST-100 Starliner sometime after that, in the middle of 2019.
However, the U.S. Government Accountability Office warned last month that certification delays for the two companies could, for a while, leave NASA with no way to get American astronauts onto the ISS.
"The goal is to have safe, reliable and cost-effective access to and from the International Space Station and foster commercial access to other potential low-Earth orbit destinations", NASA said.
In 2015, NASA astronauts Robert Behnken, Eric Boe, Douglas Hurley and Sunita Williams were assigned to the commercial crew program to provide the astronaut's perspective during commercial crew development.
Raikkonen still waiting on Ferrari decision
Toro Rosso was the only team running a 2nd vehicle as part of Pirelli's tire testing schedule for Y 2019. Williams test driver Robert Kubica was back in action on Wednesday and set the sixth fastest time .
Ivanka Trump: Family separations a 'low point,' media not the enemy
After Allen said that the forced family separations were a low point for many , Trump said "that was a low point for me, as well". Ivanka continued: "I am a daughter of an immigrant, my mother grew up in Communist Czech Republic, but we are a country of laws".
Prince Harry puts his Audi up for sale on Auto Trader
A auto believed to be owned by Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex , is now on the market to the tune of over $93,000. The grey Audi RS6 once owned by Prince Harry of the British royal family is now for sale on AutoTrader in the UK.
This will be the first trip into space for Mr. Glover, Mr. Cassada and Ms. Mann.
The vessels, the SpaceX Dragon and Boeing Starliner, have been developed with billions of dollars in funding from NASA, which has contracted SpaceX and Northrop Grumman to make cargo deliveries to the space station since 2012.
Since then, astronauts have relied on Russian Soyuz spacecraft to transport them to and from the orbiting space station.
On the right, NASA astronauts conduct a fully-suited exercise in Boeing's CST-100 Starliner mock-up trainer in early May at the agency's Johnson Space Center in Houston.
NASA has announced the first astronauts who will head to the International Space Station on a commercially built spacecraft.
The astronauts assigned to the Starliner's first mission are Sunita Williams, who retired as a Navy captain, and Cmdr.
After announcing the crews, Bridenstine engaged in a largely lighthearted question-and-answer session with the selected astronauts, who expressed their delight in being selected and anticipation in flying on these next-generation vehicles. Just as in the past, all human launches will originate here on the space coast. He is the director of Crew and Mission Systems for Boeing's Commercial Crew Program.
The contracts for travel to the International Space Station were awarded in 2014. In any case, SpaceX is now the presumed leader of the race to capture the flag left on the station by the final space shuttle crew-a flag that has been waiting to return to Earth for eight years and counting.