A SpaceX Dragon capsule is grappled by the space station’s robotic Canadarm2 on April 10, 2016. (Click for full view) Photo Credit: NASA
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — The cargo aboard NASA’s scheduled Aug. 14, 2017, commercial resupply mission to the International Space Station (ISS) could help more people than just the six astronauts and cosmonauts currently living there. With more than three tons of experiments and materials being ferried, SpaceX‘s Dragon capsule promises to benefit people ranging from those suffering from Parkinson’s disease, to those seeking bio-engineered organs, to soldiers on the battlefield.
NASA Astronaut Jack Fischer works within the Japanese Experiment Module on CASIS PCG 6. CASIS PCG 7 will utilize the orbiting laboratory’s microgravity environment to grow larger versions of Leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2), implicated in Parkinson’s disease. Photo & Caption Credit: NASA
In 2008, NASA awarded two contracts – one to Orbital Sciences (now Orbital ATK) and one to SpaceX – for commercial resupply services to the orbiting lab. At the time of the award, NASA ordered eight flights from Orbital, valued at about $1.9 billion, and 12 flights from SpaceX, valued at approximately $1.6 billion. SpaceX flew its first mission under the contract in October ...