If schedules and the weather hold up, the launch of NASA’s SpaceX Crew-1 Mission on the “Resilience” Crew Dragon spacecraft, powered by a Falcon 9 rocket, will begin at 7:27 p.m. ET on Sunday from pad 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
🚀 We’re sending four astronauts to the @Space_Station on a U.S. rocket from U.S. soil at 7:27pm ET on Sunday, Nov. 15.
— NASA (@NASA) November 14, 2020
Sunday’s launch will make history as the first crewed commercial space mission to the space station. This will also be the second time in a decade that NASA has launched astronauts from the US.
In May, astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken rode the Crew Dragon spacecraft, powered by Falcon 9 rocket, to the space station, stayed for two months and returned to Earth in August.
On Friday, at a press conference, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said, “this is another historic moment — it seems like every time I come to Kennedy [Space Center] we’re making history, and this is no different.”
All systems are go for tonight’s launch at 7:27 p.m. EST of Crew Dragon’s first operational mission with four astronauts on board. Teams are keeping an eye on weather conditions for liftoff, which are currently 50% favorable → https://t.co/bJFjLCzWdK pic.twitter.com/GTpvVAiLkK
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) November 15, 2020
Bridenstine continued: “The history being made this time is we’re launching what we call an operational flight to the International Space Station.”
“The whole goal here is to commercialize our activities in low-Earth orbit,” he added. “NASA wants to be one customer of many customers in a very robust commercial marketplace for human spaceflight in low-Earth orbit.”
NASA’s website outlines today’s scheduled events:
- 3:15 p.m. – Coverage of the Launch of NASA’s SpaceX Crew-1 Mission on the “Resilience” Crew Dragon to the International Space Station (Mike Hopkins, Victor Glover, Shannon Walker, Soichi Noguchi;
- Launch scheduled at 7:27 p.m. EST; coverage will be continuous through docking and hatch opening on Sunday, Nov. 15) – Kennedy Space Center/ Hawthorne, Calif./Johnson Space Center
- 9:30 p.m. – NASA/ SpaceX Crew-1 Postlaunch News Conference (time is subject to change)- Kennedy Space Center
NASA Live: Launch Event
It remains to be seen if SpaceX CEO Elon Musk attends the launch event as he revealed Saturday evening he “likely” has a “moderate case of COIVID-19.