Alongside the resupply missions, SpaceX is also targeting manned spaceflight. After winning awards in the first two rounds, SpaceX is bidding for the third and final round of commercial crew development funding - commercial crew integrated capability (CCiCap) - which could be awarded as early as July.
"I think [the bid was] pretty aggressive on demonstrations," says Gwynne Shotwell, president of SpaceX. "We packed ours full of a lot of hardware, lot of demonstrations, lots of tests. I bet we've got more tests in our baseline offer than anybody else."
If NASA can find a commercial partner to perform crew flights to the ISS, then it eases another of its woes: the "embarrassing" need to rely on the Russians and their Soyuz craft to perform the missions.