Boeing has reported a massive new construction project aimed at astronaut transportation.
According to the Guardian, Boeing Co recently revealed its newest project, a spaceship assembly plant at Cape Canaveral, Florida. The company reported that the new plant will focus primarily on the construction of the CST-100 Starliner spacecraft.
Reports indicate that the Boeing’s new Starliner capsule will be used by NASA to transport crew members to the International Space Station (ISS).
The spaceship has been scheduled to make its first launch sometime in 2017. It will take off from the Air Force Station at Cape Canaveral aboard Atlas 5 rockets, which are built and flown by United Launch Alliance, a collaboration between Lockheed Martin Corporation (LMT) and Boeing.
NASA has previously collaborated with Boeing and Elon Musk’s SpaceX on projects involving the transportation of astronauts from Cape Canaveral to the space station.
NASA currently has a $4.2 billion commercial crew contract with Boeing for a test flight of the Starliner capsule, which will take up to six missions to the ISS. NASA also has a similar contract with SpaceX, valued at $2.6 billion.
Some experts reported that the Starliner could compete with SpaceX’s Dragon capsules, as the Starliner has some similar features, including a seven-member crew capacity.
Boeing Chief Executive, Dennis Muilenburg, who declined to comment on Boeing’s financial contribution to the project, claimed that the ultimate success of the project will depend on customers beyond NASA.