NASA and SpaceX currently are focusing on 1:10 a.m. EDT Wednesday, November 3, for the organization’s Crew-3 launch to the International Space Station because of a huge storm system wandering across the Ohio Valley and through the northeastern United States this weekend, raising winds and waves in the Atlantic Ocean along the Crew Dragon flight way for the October 31 launch attempt.
Weather conditions along the rising corridor are relied upon to improve for a November 3 launch attempt, and the 45th Weather Squadron forecast predicts an 80% chance of favorable weather conditions at the launch site.
NASA astronauts Raja Chari, mission commander, Tom Marshburn, pilot, and Kayla Barron, mission specialist and ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Matthias Maurer, likewise a mission specialist, will launch on the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft and Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Complex 39A at the office’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Crew-3 astronauts are planned for a long-duration science mission onboard the orbiting lab, living and working as part of what is generally expected to be a seven-member crew.
Launch November 3 would have Crew-3 showing up at the space station later that same day around 11 p.m. Wednesday, November 3, for a short handover with the astronauts that traveled to the station as part of the office’s SpaceX Crew-2 mission.
Crew-2 NASA astronauts Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur, JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) astronaut Akihiko Hoshide, and ESA astronaut Thomas Pesquet are right now focusing on return toward the beginning of November. Crew-3 astronauts are set to return in late April 2022.
NASA’s SpaceX Crew-3 astronauts will stay at team quarters at Kennedy until their launch. They will spend time with their families and get technical and weather briefings in the next few days.
The Crew Dragon Endurance is scheduled to dock at the space station at 11 p.m. Wednesday, November 3. Launch and docking coverage will air live on NASA Television, the NASA app, and the agency’s website.
The Crew-3 flight will carry NASA astronauts Raja Chari, mission commander; Tom Marshburn, pilot; and Kayla Barron, mission specialist; as well as ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Matthias Maurer, who will serve as a mission specialist, to the space station for a six-month science mission, remaining on board until late April 2022.
Wednesday’s launch denotes the fourth crewed mission for SpaceX under agreement with NASA and fifth generally while including private spaceflight. Known as Crew-3, the four astronauts will spend about a half year on the ISS leading science experiments, spacewalks, and maintaining the station with Russian counterparts.
The Crew-2 mission with NASA astronauts Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur, JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) astronaut Akihiko Hoshide, and ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Thomas Pesquet will presently focus on their undocking from the space station for no sooner than Sunday, November 7, to get back to Earth.
Crew-2, comprised of one more four astronauts, launched in April and is set to get back to Earth in November, around a similar time as Crew-3 takes off. Crew-2 denoted the first time NASA agreed to launch astronauts on a recycled Falcon 9 rocket.
The Dragon spacecraft used in the Crew-3 mission has taken part in 30 total launches and is capable of carrying up to 7 travelers to and from Earth orbit, and then some. It is the only spacecraft at present flying that is capable of returning significant amounts of cargo to Earth and is the first private spacecraft to take humans to the space station.
Recently, Morgan Stanley predicted that SpaceX would make Elon Musk the world’s first trillionaire after Forbes released a piece claiming that SpaceX, a private company, had an expected valuation of $100 billion among investors.
The reusability of SpaceX’s rockets is a key reason why SpaceX is a highly valued organization since they drive down the gradual cost of each launch, claims Morgan Stanley.
NASA’s SpaceX Crew-3 mission coverage is as follows (all times Eastern):
Tuesday, November 2
- 8:45 p.m. – NASA Television launch coverage starts. NASA will have continuous coverage, including launch, docking, hatch open, and welcome ceremony.
Wednesday, November 3
- 1:10 a.m. – Launch
NASA TV coverage proceeds through docking, arrival, and the welcome ceremony. Instead of a postlaunch news conference, NASA leadership will give comments during the broadcast.
- 11 p.m. – Docking
Thursday, November 4
- 12:35 a.m. – Hatch Opening
- 1:10 a.m. – Welcoming Ceremony