NASA announced on Friday that a SpaceX rocket will send two American astronauts to the International Space Station on May 27 and this will be the first crewed spaceflight from the US in nearly a decade.
BREAKING: On May 27, @NASA will once again launch American astronauts on American rockets from American soil! With our @SpaceX partners, @Astro_Doug and @AstroBehnken will launch to the @Space_Station on the #CrewDragon spacecraft atop a Falcon 9 rocket. Let's #LaunchAmerica 🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/RINb3mfRWI— Jim Bridenstine (@JimBridenstine) April 17, 2020
As we know, the US has relying on Russian Soyuz rockets to send American astronauts to the ISS since July 2011. But now, this would change.
The US space agency had been aiming to conduct the crewed mission in May and is sticking with the plan despite the global coronavirus pandemic.
Astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley will fly to the ISS on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket aboard a Crew Dragon spacecraft also built by SpaceX.
If the current plan is executed well without any disturbances from corona, the rocket will lift off at 4:32 pm (20:32 GMT) on May 27 from historic launch pad 39A, the same one used for the Apollo and space shuttle missions, at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, NASA said.
Behnken and Hurley, the two astronauts are being trained for years for this mission and this would make America no longer reliant on Russia for crewed missions.
Approximately, it will take the rocket 24 hours after liftoff to dock with the International space station. The length of their stay aboard the ISS has not been determined yet.
Currently, there is one American astronaut and two Russian cosmonauts on the ISS.
The May mission will be a milestone for NASA, which has had trouble turning the page on the space shuttle era. Shuttles transported American astronauts into space for three decades but two of them also blew up.
After abandoning the shuttle, NASA turned to private industry to develop its next-generation spacecraft and SpaceX and Boeing have been competing on rolling out a crewed capsule.
SpaceX came up with Crew Dragon and Boeing the Starliner but the Starliner suffered a setback in December during a test run.
SpaceX will now become the first private company to send astronauts into space.
LAUNCH UPDATE: Our first crewed @SpaceX mission with @AstroBehnken and @Astro_Doug is set for liftoff May 27 at 4:32pm ET from @NASAKennedy.@NASA_Astronauts will once again launch on American-made rockets from American soil. Get ready to #LaunchAmerica: https://t.co/kMRxVZ6KgE pic.twitter.com/DZ0HJcwcDB— NASA (@NASA) April 17, 2020
In March, SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule went to ISS and came back to earth after 6 days. SpaceX has made this trip 15 times in the decade but it was only to refuel the station and this will be the first time with humans.Recommend0 recommendationsPublished in