NASA has booked a $90 million seat abroad the Russian Soyuz MS manned spaceship for a flight to the International Space Station (ISS), a contract for which was signed on Tuesday.
"A contract was signed today on providing a seat for a US astronaut onboard a Soyuz MS manned spaceship to be launched to the ISS in the autumn of 2020," the press service of the Russian Space Agency, Roscosmos was quoted as saying by TASS.
While Roscosmos did not disclose the value of the deal stating that it is a "commercial secret," a NASA’s official was quoted by Russian media as saying that her organization will pay more than 90 million US dollars for a Soyuz seat and corresponding services.
NASA said earlier it had finished consultations with Roscosmos on purchasing a seat onboard a Soyuz spaceship to be launched to the ISS in the autumn.
NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said on May 1 the sides were close to an agreement on the purchase of a Soyuz seat. The launch is planned for October 2020. He did not rule out that NASA could buy one more seat.
The United States stopped its own manned spaceflights in 2011 when the Space Shuttle program was closed. Since then, NASA astronauts have been taken to the ISS by Russian Soyuz spaceship. Currently, a number of US companies are developing new spacecraft for manned programs.