The hardware that will launch the first entirely private astronaut mission to the International Space Station has made its way to the platform.
On Tuesday (April 5), SpaceX rolled out Falcon 9 A rocket and a dragon capsule that will fly Ax mission 1 On our way to launch Platform 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center (KSC) in Florida. SpaceX has been published Subtraction photos on Twitter (Opens in a new tab).
Ax-1 organized by Houston Corporation Axiom SpaceIt is scheduled to launch on Friday (April 8). It will send three fee-paying customers and Axiom employee Michael Lopez Alegria, the former NASA astronaut leading the mission, to the orbiting laboratory for eight days.
Ordinary citizens have visited the station before, but they have always traveled side by side with government astronauts – specifically, staff RoscosmosRussian Federal Space Agency. So Ax-1 will carve out a new path.
However, the upcoming mission isn’t the first flight by an all-private crew into Earth orbit. This distinction belongs to Inspiration 4The SpaceX flight was purchased and led by technology entrepreneur Jared Isakman. He and three other people orbited our planet for about three days last September aboard the Dragon capsule, but did not meet the space station.
The launch of the Ax-1 has been targeted for Sunday (April 3), but has been postponed to accommodate NASA’s “wet clothes rehearsal”. Artemis 1 Moon mission, which took place that same weekend at KSC’s Pad 39B.
The Artemis 1 test did not conclude on Sunday as planned; It was delayed and then suspended due to technical and will problems Resume sometime after Ax-1 drops off the ground.
SpaceX has another manned Dragon mission coming this month as well – Crew-4, which will send three NASA astronauts and one European spaceflight to the space station for an extended stay. Crew-4 is currently scheduled to launch from Pad 39A on April 20.
Mike Wall is the author of “Abroad (Opens in a new tab)Book (Great Grand Publishing House, 2018; illustrated by Carl Tate), a book on the search for extraterrestrials. Follow him on Twitter Tweet embed (Opens in a new tab). Follow us on Twitter Tweet embed (Opens in a new tab) or on Facebook (Opens in a new tab).
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