Boeing's Latest Mission: Space

Image But to grow in the 21st century, the company knows it needs to do more than that. For that reason, Boeing [BA  72.82    -0.88  (-1.19%)   ] has been aggressively diversifying. Take space, for example. The company was recently awarded a $460 million contract by NASA to pursue human spaceflight for government and commercial purposes. That's small change for a $55 billion company, but Boeing clearly sees space travel as a key component of its future. So what makes Boeing think they are so likely to succeed?

"The reason it’s going to work is the experience we have operating in this environment and the experience we have to open the market up to other people that are interested in human space exploration” said John Mulholland, VP of and Program Manage of Boeing’s Commercial Crew Program.

Sierra Nevada Corporation and Elon Musk’s SpaceX were also part of the overall $1.1 billion contract NASA awarded in August. Each company will work on creating a vehicle that will be able to transport astronauts into space for the first time since the shuttle program ended a little over a year ago. (Read More: Nasa Picks Firms for $1.1 Billion Space Taxi Program.)

NASA Program Manager for the Commercial Crew Program Ed Mango told CNBC that all three companies have very different approaches and hopes the diversity will push the companies to create the best design to get NASA back to the international space station.

Boeing's space vehicle is called the CST-100, and it will fit up to 7 crew members or a combination of cargo and crew. The vehicle is being built at the old shuttle processing facility at Kennedy Space Center, which is in the process of being renovated and equipped for the new needs of the CST-100. By: Brian A. Shactman, Jessica Golden /
Last modified onSaturday, 06 May 2017 10:07