SpaceX Set to Launch First Astronauts. Here's How to Watch

James Marshall
August 3, 2020

Called Demo-2, the mission is scheduled for launch at 6:33 am AEST from the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida.

Gradually, it has earned the trust of the planet's largest space agency.

NASA astronauts Douglas Hurley, left, and Robert Behnken, during a launch rehearsal.

"SpaceX would not be here without NASA", said Musk past year, after a successful dress rehearsal without humans for the trip to the ISS.

NASA is also paying Boeing to build its own capsule, the Starliner, which is still not ready. Rather than spend billions developing and flying cargo and resupply missions, in 2010 NASA opted to pay fixed-bid contracts for routine launches to private companies while concentrating on major goals like the 2024 Artemis moon program.

A decade on it is another president, Donald Trump, who will attend Wednesday's launch in Florida. NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said he hopes this launch will inspire awe and uplift the general public during the ongoing coronavirus health crisis.

Crew Dragon is a capsule like Apollo, but updated for the 21st century.

In 2011, the USA retired its Space Shuttle fleet.

In press briefings, Behnken and Hurley said they'd been tested twice for COVID-19 and expected to be tested one final time before launch. In recent years, NASA has been buying rides for its astronauts on Russian craft from Roscosmos, Russia's national space agency. The crew is expected to arrive at its destination, the International Space Station, at 10:39 a.m. Thursday. The thing is that the contract between SpaceX and NASA provides for the implementation of several more missions to deliver people to space.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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