Post by BellevueBuckeye on May 27, 2020 8:58:17 GMT -5
This will be the first orbital launch of American astronauts from American soil since the final Space Shuttle mission in 2011.
Lauch time is scheduled for this afternoon at 4:33 pm EDT from pad 39-A at the Kennedy Space Center. Backup launch dates are this Saturday and Sunday, May 30 and 31.
Docking at the International Space Station will take place 19 hours after the launch, and the time the Dragon capsule will stay there has yet to be determined. The astronauts for this historic mission are Doug Hurley (who flew on the final Space Shuttle mission) and Bob Behnken (also a Space Shuttle veteran)
The launch will be streamed live on both NASA and SpaceX's youtube pages, and live streaming of pre launch activities will begin at 12:15 pm EDT.
Crew Dragon Demo-1 took place last year, and was an unmanned test of the capsule that successfully docked with the ISS. This Demo-2 mission is the crewed test, with the purpose of proving the system can safely transport humans too and from the ISS. If successful, NASA will begin using the Dragon capsule to ferry 4 astronauts at a time to the ISS starting this fall.
I'm very excited to watch this today, but am pretty nervous that it will be bumped back to the weekend due to weather (note: they have to look at both the weather at Cape Canaveral as well as weather and sea conditions where the first stage will attempt to land on an autonomous drone ship)
Post by BellevueBuckeye on May 30, 2020 19:00:26 GMT -5
Yes, there is an abort system. An explosion during a ground fire test of it last year is why today's launch ended up being delayed till this year. They fixed the problem and had a successful in flight test of it back in January.
Today's launch went perfectly, and now Bob and Doug are on their was to the ISS, where they will be docking around 10:30 EDT tomorrow morning