NASA is set to receive a $6 billion fund injection over the next five years in a bid for ocompanies to develop rockets capable of taking astronauts to the International Space Station.

A White House official confirmed Thursday that when next week's budget is proposed, NASA will get an additional $5.9 billion over five years, according to numerous reports from Florida newspapers.

Some of that money will be used to extend the life of the International Space Station to 2020.

The official said it also will be used to entice companies to build private spacecraft to ferry astronauts to the space station after the space shuttle retires.

In total, NASA will receive $100 billion over five years under President Barack Obama's fiscal year 2011 budget.

My initial impression is that this is a real significant indication of support for NASA in a time of tight budgets, former astronaut Sally Ride told Bloomberg.