Just a reminder that you can watch today’s launch of SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft, carrying NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken to the Space Station from Kennedy Space Center’s historic Pad 39A, live right here on Lights in the Dark!
Today’s Demo-2 launch will be the first time NASA astronauts will launch to space from the United States since the final flight of the Space Shuttle with STS-135 Atlantis on July 8, 2011. (Doug Hurley was also a crew member on that flight, interestingly enough!) This will be the first crewed flight of SpaceX’s Crew Dragon vehicle, as well as their first-ever crewed mission.
This is the second launch attempt of Demo-2; the first on May 27 was scrubbed due to weather violations. Today’s weather at Cape Canaveral looks to be about 50% favorable for launch.
Today’s instantaneous launch window opens at 3:22 p.m. ET / 19:22 UTC. NASA coverage of the historic event will air live starting at 11:00 a.m. ET / 15:00 UTC.
Lifting off from Launch Pad 39A atop a specially instrumented Falcon 9 rocket, Crew Dragon will accelerate its two passengers to approximately 17,000 mph and put it on an intercept course with the International Space Station. Once in orbit, the crew and SpaceX mission control will verify the spacecraft is performing as intended by testing the environmental control system, the displays and control system and the maneuvering thrusters, among other things. In about 24 hours, Crew Dragon will be in position to rendezvous and dock with the space station. The spacecraft is designed to do this autonomously but astronauts aboard the spacecraft and the station will be diligently monitoring approach and docking and can take control of the spacecraft if necessary. After successfully docking, Behnken and Hurley will be welcomed aboard station and will become members of the Expedition 63 crew. They will perform tests on Crew Dragon in addition to conducting research and other tasks with the space station crew. (Source: NASA)
Update: missed the live coverage? You can watch video from the launch here.