We don’t usually send tips out on Saturdays, but today we’re making an exception to call attention to a special event that will (hopefully) take place later today: the launch of two U.S. astronauts into space!
After the originally scheduled launch on Wednesday was called off due to weather, NASA and SpaceX—which will become the first commercial aerospace company to courier humans into Earth’s orbit—have planned the second attempt for today (Saturday, May 30) at 3:22pm ET. You can watch it on your local CBS station or online via NASA’s webcast (where pre-launch coverage will start at 11am ET).
In a great and thorough post on the mission, CNN writes that “whether or not the rocket will actually take off will most likely come down to the weather forecast — again. As of Friday morning, the 45th Space Wing, an arm of the US military that oversees all East Coat rocket launches, predicts about a 50% chance of the weather holding up enough for launch on Saturday. And the odds are slightly better — about a 60% chance — for the next opportunity for liftoff on Sunday, May 31, at 3:00 p.m. ET.” So if the NASA-SpaceX launch is called off again today, tune in tomorrow at 3pm ET for the next attempt!
More on the NASA-SpaceX launch and mission
The two astronauts, Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley, will depart from Kennedy Space Center in Florida, which I got to visit last year (read about my visit and see my photos here). The men will sit inside a capsule known as Crew Dragon, which will be powered by a Falcon 9 rocket built by SpaceX. Their destination? The International Space Station, where per CNN “they’re expecting to spend one to three months in space.”
Notably, “the United States hasn’t launched its own astronauts into space since the Space Shuttle program ended in 2011. Since then, NASA’s astronauts have had to travel to Russia and train on the country’s Soyuz spacecraft. Those seats have cost NASA as much as $86 million each.” This mission, therefore, marks an exciting step for U.S. efforts in space.
For much more on the NASA-SpaceX launch and the mission (Mission 2), check out the CNN post here.
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