What private businesses working on space flight?

spaceX

Physics help! Can someone Please help me!?

I don't know how to figure out the new elliptical orbit; the reason why it develops is that if you just slow down the capsule, it no longer has enough centrifugal force to balance the gravitational force, so it must fall ... but it doesn't just fall straight down, it falls while moving forward. I think if the delta-V happened VERY VERY slowly, the orbit would remain nearly circular. So the eccentricity of the new orbit must in some way involve the short time that the thrusters were slowing it down. My only real contribution is: the "perigee" is the point where the capsule is nearest the earth. Probably at one end of the ellipse, since it's likely that the center of the earth is at one focus of the ellipse.

Constellation vs COTS?

mostly a holdover from the days when we used to trust NASA. it was inconceivable that a private company could launch a 'Vulture 1' and compete with the US government. now, its not so certain. both the dragon and k-1 look viable, and the current space program needs them... but i want to withhold judgement until i see either docking at the ISS.

What spacecrafts would carry people into space over the next 3 years once the space shuttle retires?

Certainly nothing at NASA since it's been gutted.

What private businesses working on space flight?

Bigelow is working on inflatable structures to build a private space station. But he is contracting with others, including Space-X, to launch his modules. Armadillo Aerospace is still working on their vehicles but they are not even ready for suborbital flights yet, and don't seem like they will be any time soon. They would not be SSTO anyway.

When is the first flight of the "SpaceX Dragon SpaceCraft" going to be?

You missed the first launch which happened December 8th, 2010. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/COTS_Demo_Flight_1 Although I think you mean the next one that is scheduled to go to the ISS. That's scheduled for May 19th, 2012 (with a backup date of May 22nd). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/COTS_Demo_Flight_2

When the spacex dragon launch goes to the international space station on Tuesday 5/22/2012 will it have?

the first few launches are all unmanned cargo runs - the Dragon capsule and Falcon launch vehicle are not yet rated for manned flight

What is the second parachuting object next to the SpaceX Dragon?

Lens refraction. If you want a cool theory about aliens or secret govt. flights I can't help you. They would not drop a second craft within viewing distance now, would they?