The commercial spaceship designed for astronauts will be launched for the first time on Saturday at 2:49 a.m. ET. NASA is considering this a „critical mission”even if the launch is a test. There were years of delays before. The goal of the launch is to show that Crew Dragon, or Dragon V2 – a new spaceship that Elon Musk’s spaceflight company designed for NASA – is safe to fly astronauts to and from the International Space Station.
The arm passage for astronauts extended to Crew Dragon
If this test proves successful, SpaceX may launch its first astronauts as soon as July. This will restore NASA’s ability to launch astronauts on its own ships knowing that US astronauts currently fly to and from the ISS on Russian Soyuz spacecraft. “The ISS still has three people on board, and so this vehicle coming up to the ISS for the first time has to work. It has to work,” Kirk Shireman, who manages the space station program at NASA’s Johnson Space Center, said. NASA TV plans to broadcast live video and commentary of the Falcon 9 rocket launch. Both SpaceX and aerospace company Boeing have been crafting capsules for this purpose and SpaceX could be the first one to put its vehicle in space. The Crew Dragon is equipped with various instruments and cameras designed to gather data throughout its flight.