In the early hours of the morning, SpaceX is set to begin its seventh mission for its staff to take over, this time sending three astronauts to NASA and an Italian astronaut at the International Space Station. Their discovery will mark the beginning of their six-month stay on the ISS, part of NASA’s SpaceX commitment to periodically fly pilots from the orbiter.
The mission, known as the Crew-4, is SpaceX’s fourth ISS manned spacecraft at NASA. The company was flying NASA astronauts into space as part of a trade union agency program, a proposal to use specially designed satellites to orbit spacecraft. SpaceX introduced its first ISS crew on the company’s Crew Dragon aircraft in 2020 and has been in constant follow-up with staff operations so far.
The flight was attended by two veteran pilots: NASA astronaut Kjell Lindgren and Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti from the European Space Agency, both of whom had previously visited the International Space Station. It will be joined by two pilots, including NASA astronauts Jessica Watkins and Bob Hines, both chosen to be astronauts in 2017. Watkins will also make its own flight history, as it will be the first. A black woman to live with a long-serving staff member at an air base.
“This is really an important achievement, I think for both our agency and the country,” Watkins said of her flight. “And I think it’s really just a tribute to the legacy of the Black Women astrologers before me, as well as the exciting future ahead. So I am honored to be a small part of that legacy going forward.”
Crew-4 expires less than two days after SpaceX was restored another one four of the crew at the air base, although those personnel were not included in any government documents. On April 8, SpaceX sent four special astronauts to the ISS Crew Dragon for space company Axiom Space, which has contracted SpaceX to launch a series of manned spacecraft upper air station. Most of the Axiom papers each paid $ 55 million for their Crew Dragon seat, agreeing to conduct tests while at the station and help Axiom develop protocols for people sent to future airports.
Axiom astronauts were due to return to Earth after an eight-day visit to the ISS, but their home journey was delayed for a week due to bad weather in Florida where they needed to spread. As the Axiom flight expands, NASA should postpone launching Crew-4, as the agency wanted up to two days to prepare for the interval between launch and launch. Finally, Axiom staff were able to arrive home Monday afternoon, paving the way for Crew-4 to begin Wednesday morning.
Once in Crew-4 at the space station, they will join three Russian cosmonauts, three NASA astronauts, and a German astronaut from the European Space Agency who previously lived on the ISS. NASA astronauts and ESA astronauts will help track the upcoming ISS crew before they return home to their own SpaceX Crew Dragon. They are part of NASA and SpaceX’s Crew-3 mission, which began in space and ended in November.
The Crew-4 is set to be launched at 3:52 AM ET on the surface of the Falcon 9 SpaceX rocket off the company’s bedside at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center. NASA plans to pay for the start of midnight ET ET on Wednesday morning.