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NASA Taps Virgin Galactic to Create Readiness Program for Commercial Flights to ISS

Virgin Galactic has signed an agreement with NASA to develop a training program that will help private passengers prepare for spaceflight missions to the International Space Station.

Under the Space Act Agreement, Virgin Galactic will help NASA identify potential customers and providers of low-Earth orbit transport as well as ground and on-orbit resources, the company said Monday.

Virgin Galactic will also provide program management services and training packages designed to meet requirements for private astronaut spaceflight.

The company noted that it intends to build on its existing Future Astronaut Readiness program at its Spaceport America complex in New Mexico as part of the effort.

George Whitesides, CEO of Virgin Galactic, said the commercial spaceflight initiative will enable the company to offer its training infrastructure to NASA and other agencies while supporting efforts to “grow another market for the new space economy.”

According to Virgin Galactic, its partnership with NASA will also support efforts to promote industry involvement on flights to the ISS for research as well as commercial activities.

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