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NASA extends Boeing contract for International Space Station

By Ryan Maass
NASA extends Boeing contract for International Space Station
An early morning sunrise over the Grand Canyon as seen from the International Space Station. NASA astronaut Terry Virts (@AstroTerry) posted the photo on social media on May 10, 2015. Photo by Terry Virts/NASA/UPI

HOUSTON, Sept. 30 (UPI) -- NASA has decided to keep Boeing as the International Space Station's prime contractor through September 30, 2020, Boeing announced on Tuesday.

The contract is valued at $1.18 billion, and includes engineering support services, resources, and personal. Boeing will also be tasked with determining how to extend the life of the station's primary structural hardware past 2020, through the end of 2028. Boeing will be joined by NASA's 16 international partners in extending the life of the station.

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"This is a continuation of the successful relationship with NASA," said John Elbon, vice president and general manager of Boeing Space Exploration in a statement. "It builds on Boeing's tradition of innovation and technological advancement to incorporate efficiencies and improve performance to the station s its importance to the future of human spaceflight continues to grow."

The ISS was launched in 1998, and is now the largest artificial body to orbit the Earth. It serves as a microgravity laboratory for scientific research. It has been continuously inhabited for almost 15 years.

Boeing's new contract will also include management for the majority of other space station systems. Their work will be performed at NASA's facilities in Houston, Florida, Alabama, and other international locations.

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