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PICTURE: Boeing reveals commercial crew capsule

Boeing has revealed its capsule concept for NASA's $50 million Commercial Crew Development (CCD) initiative. The seven-person craft is larger than an Apollo capsule. It can be launched by different rockets and has a cargo variant. Boeing, which will match NASA's $18 million funding, has for the capsule project teamed with Bigelow Aerospace, which has its own plans to launch a private space station in 2014. Boeing is one of five companies awarded funded Space Act agreements under the CCD initiative. President Barack Obama's fiscal year 2011 budget also features $500 million to start a five-year $6 billion commercial crew programme, for which Boeing and other CCD winners must re-compete.

NASA Commercial Crew Vehicle concept, NASA 
 © Boeing
Boeing Commercial Crew Development Initiative capsule concept

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