Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Stay on top of the latest market trends

Subscribe to Axios Markets for the latest market trends and economic insights. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

After an absence lasting 9 years, the U.S. is seeking to resume launching humans to space from American soil.

But this time it won’t be NASA doing the launches — it will be Boeing and SpaceX, private contractors that NASA selected to transport crew to the International Space Station.

  • Both companies have a track record of satellite launches but are untested when it comes to human spaceflight.
  • They're also relying on entirely new and as-yet untested spacecraft.

Safety is a major sticking point, particularly the standards by which NASA, Boeing and SpaceX calculate the odds of killing or permanently disabling an astronaut.

  • One of these standards is known as the "loss of crew" standard, for which the space agency has set a 1-in-270 probability for Commercial Crew providers to meet in order to be certified to fly NASA astronauts to the ISS.

For example, NASA has expressed concern about the safety of SpaceX’s plan to fuel the rocket with potentially explosive propellant after the astronauts board the Crew Dragon capsule.

  • In July, the Government Accountability Office said NASA had not applied consistent safety standards to SpaceX and Boeing spacecraft designs and launch plans.
  • The GAO said meeting the standards has also been difficult from the companies’ perspectives, given the novelty of their designs.
  • Boeing told Axios it expects to "exceed" NASA's safety requirements for loss of crew and mission capability.

Where it stands: NASA, SpaceX and Boeing have announced their initial commercial crew test flight and ISS mission astronauts, who are now training for these flights. Both companies are planning for uncrewed test flights early next year, with the first crewed tests to come later in 2019 and possibly continue into 2020.

The schedule has been subject to multiple delays, the most recent of which occurred on October 4.

Editor's note: This story has been updated to clarify that the first uncrewed flight tests will take place in early 2019.

Go deeper

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
12 mins ago - Economy & Business

Miami mayor: Bitcoin's appeal is that governments can't manipulate it

Miami Mayor Francis Suarez is pushing to make bitcoin a part of his city's economic future, and in an interview with "Axios on HBO," he pushed back against the economic orthodoxy of people like Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen who say it's a bad idea.

Why it matters: Miami's inclusion of bitcoin as a way to pay city employees or as part of the city's emergency cash holdings, as Suarez has proposed, would add legitimacy to the cryptocurrency and further entrench it in the U.S. economic system.

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
13 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Miami mayor acknowledges Big Tech plans could hurt the city's poor

Photo: "Axios on HBO"

Miami Mayor Francis Suarez's ambitions to attract Big Tech has generated a lot of headlines — but it will likely come with some negative impacts for current residents, for which the mayor admits there may not be solutions.

What he's saying: "Gentrification is real," Suarez told "Axios on HBO." But even with his efforts to promote affordable housing, he argues that "government has a limited amount of resources and a limited amount of ability to stop things that are market driven."

Trump's assault on Chinese tech left loose ends galore

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President Trump's haphazard war on Chinese tech has left the Biden administration with a raft of unfinished business involving efforts to restrict Chinese firms and products in U.S. markets.

Why it matters: The Chinese and American tech industries are joined at the hip in many ways, and that interdependence has shaped decades of prosperity. But now security concerns and economic rivalries are wrenching them apart.