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Boeing: Let us fly you into space

By the CNN Wire Staff
By 2015, Boeing expects its CST-100 capsule to be able to carry passengers to orbiting space stations.
By 2015, Boeing expects its CST-100 capsule to be able to carry passengers to orbiting space stations.
  • Prices haven't been announced yet
  • Boeing's partner has already flown seven people to the International Space Station
  • The company expects its CST-100 spacecraft to be operational by 2015

(CNN) -- Hang onto your luggage, Boeing wants to fly you into space -- at least into low-Earth orbit.

The aerospace company and a Virginia company have reached a preliminary agreement to sell seats on Boeing commercial crew spacecraft to individuals, companies, nongovernmental organizations, and U.S. federal agencies, Boeing said in a news release.

The price of flights hasn't been decided but will be announced when full-scale development gets going.

Virginia-based Space Adventures Ltd. has already successfully contracted and flown seven people on missions to the International Space Station, Boeing said.

"By combining our talents, we can better offer safe, affordable transportation to commercial spaceflight customers," said Brewster Shaw, vice president and general manager of Boeing's Space Exploration division.

The partnership still needs NASA and its international partners in the International Space Station to sign on, because that's where the space tourists would go. Such flights would meet NASA's intent to promote space commerce in low-Earth orbit, Boeing said.

Meanwhile, the aerospace company is pushing ahead on the design for its CST-100 spacecraft, which can carry seven people. The spacecraft can fly on multiple launch vehicles and is expected to be operational by 2015, Boeing said.

"We are excited about the potential to offer flights on Boeing's spacecraft," said Eric Anderson, co-founder and chairman of Space Adventures. "With our customer experience and Boeing's heritage in human spaceflight, our goal is not only to benefit the individuals who fly to space, but also to help make the resources of space available to the commercial sector by bringing the value from space back to Earth."

Space Adventures says it offers terrestrial weightless flights to orbital missions and flights to the edge of space and has sent customers on more than 2,000 hours in space, traveling over 35 million miles.