NASA extends life of private BEAM module


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Capitalism in space: Having found that Bigelow’s privately built ISS module BEAM has exceeded its design capabilities, NASA has now decided to leave it docked to ISS for at least five more years, using it as a storage bin.

BEAM cost NASA a whopping $17 million, considerably less than it has traditionally spent (a billion-plus) for its previous ISS modules, designed and built under full NASA supervision.

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3 comments

  • mpthompson

    From what I’ve gathered in various forums regarding Bigalow, the company’s management has a very poor reputation. I hope this isn’t the case as we need companies such as this to help provide destinations for New Space to go to.

  • wodun

    Beigelow is a bit of an eccentric character. I imagine that wouldn’t go over well with a lot of space nerds.

    While I think this is great news in some ways, I’d also like to see that slot go to a BEAM2 or something a bit more capable. Or rather, I’d like to see Bigelow get rewarded by showing their tech works by giving them another more challenging task.

  • pzatchok

    I couldn’t care less if the management of Bigalow was as nutty as a box of well fed squirrels.

    That team put together a company that can now build some of the largest habitat modules on the planet and has proven there viability beyond everything NASA thought they could ever do.

    Since BEAM only cost NASA 17 million why doesn’t NASA ask them what they could build for a billion? Even if its just a water closet its still cheaper then any other module. Heck NASA could finally have that giant module it has been needing for micro gravity testing. A big room to spin stuff in.

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