NASA and SpaceX target October 23 for first operational astronaut launch

NASA and SpaceX target October 23 for first operational astronaut launch

NASA and SpaceX have set a selected goal date for Crew-1, the primary operational crewed mission for SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft. Crew-1 will carry astronauts Shannon Walker, Victor Glover, Mike Hopkins and Soichi Noguchi to the International Space Station, and can mark the primary common service mission of the Dragon spacecraft following its certification on the conclusion of its improvement and testing program.

Crew Dragon’s remaining main milestone in that course of was Demo-2, the mission launched on May 30 with astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley on board. While Hurley and Behnken accomplished that mission with a profitable return to Earth earlier this month, that was nonetheless technically a part of the qualification course of for Crew Dragon and for SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket, with the intention to certify it for human spaceflight in order that it might start common mission operations — which kick off with Crew-1.

NASA says the late October date (it had earlier mentioned a late September time-frame as a risk) is to permit for the upcoming Soyuz spacecraft site visitors from Russia to the ISS, in addition to the departure of the present Space Station crew on the finish of their present rotation. It’s additionally nonetheless pending a full evaluate of the info and qualification standards of Crew Dragon and the Demo-2 mission, which undoubtedly seems to have gone just about precisely to plan, however which nonetheless can be examined beneath a microscope by NASA and SpaceX workers to make sure that was certainly the case.

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If this information evaluate goes effectively, and Crew-1 flies in October, then Crew-2 ought to happen subsequent spring, citing 4 extra astronauts to alleviate the Crew-1 astronauts for an additional tour of science and Space Station operations.


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