The astronauts’ special mission Ax-1 will now leave the International Space Station (ISS) on Saturday night (April 23), if all goes according to plan.
four people ax 1 It was originally supposed to depart on Tuesday (April 19) after 10 days of stay aboard the orbiting laboratory. But forecasts of bad weather in the mission distribution area off the coast of Florida That plan was cancelledforcing members of the mission team to re-evaluate.
It took a few days, but there’s a new timeline in place now: Ax-1’s SpaceX NASA officials said the Dragon capsule will descend from the International Space Station on Saturday at 8:35 p.m. EDT (0035 GMT on April 24) and land on Sunday (April 24) at approximately 1:46 p.m. EST ( 1746 GMT), weather permitting.
“The decision was made based on the best weather conditions for the fall of the first private astronaut mission to visit International Space Station and the return path required to bring the crew and SpaceX Dragon Endeavor spacecraft back to Earth safely,” agency officials said Wrote in a Wednesday night update (April 20).
They added that “teams will continue to monitor the weather at the launch sites prior to docking to ensure that conditions are acceptable for the safe recovery of the Ax-1 astronauts and the Dragon spacecraft,” stressing that there are sufficient supplies to support the Ax-1 crew members and seven other astronauts aboard. Currently station.
Ax-1 is organized by Houston Axiom Space It is transmitted by SpaceX. The mission is led by former NASA astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria, who is now the vice president of business development for Axiom. The other three crew members pay customers – American Larry Connor, Canadian Mark Pathy and Israeli Eitan Stipe.
The new departure plan from the Ax-1 affects another SpaceX mission – Crew-4, which will deliver three NASA astronauts and one ESA space plane to the International Space Station for an extended stay. Crew was 4 Scheduled to be released on Saturday, but that’s not in the cards anymore; The mission will use the International Space Station’s docking port currently occupied by the Ax-1, and NASA officials have said they want to leave a two-day window between the Ax-1 sprinkler and the Crew-4 launch, to allow data analysis and other preparations.
The earliest possible launch opportunity for the Crew-4 mission is 4:15 a.m. [EDT] Tuesday, April 26, with additional opportunities Wednesday, April 27, and Thursday, April 28, NASA officials wrote in a Wednesday update. “These launch opportunities are subject to a more detailed review of the program to ensure they are aligned with integrated operational timelines.”
You can catch up on all of these activities — unpacking the Ax-1 and returning to Earth, launching Crew-4 and its flight to the International Space Station — right here at Space.com when the time is right.
Mike Wall is the author of “AbroadBook (Great Grand Publishing House, 2018; illustrated by Carl Tate), a book on the search for extraterrestrials. Follow him on Twitter Tweet embed. Follow us on Twitter Tweet embed or on Facebook.
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