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STS-135: Atlantis — The Final Voyage – A NASA Overview

Kennedy Space Center: A New Era

Click for 7 minute video KSC update.
NASA's Kennedy Space Center is midway through its transition from government-focused launch facility to multi-user spaceport capable of handling the needs of NASA's space exploration ambitions as well as commercial companies.
Published on Feb 18, 2015
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September 17, 2020

NASA to Host Preview Briefings, Interviews for First Crew Rotation Mission with SpaceX

The SpaceX Crew-1 official crew portrait.The SpaceX Crew-1 official crew portrait with (from left) NASA astronauts Shannon Walker, Victor Glover, Mike Hopkins, and JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) astronaut Soichi Noguchi.
Credits: NASA

NASA’s SpaceX Crew-1 flight mission, scheduled to launch no earlier than Oct. 23, will carry astronauts Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover, and Shannon Walker of NASA and Soichi Noguchi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) to the space station from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Following an Oct. 23 launch, the Crew-1 astronauts are scheduled to arrive at the space station the same day to join NASA astronaut Kate Rubins, as well as Expedition 64 commander Sergey Ryzhikov and flight engineer Sergey Kud-Sverchkov, both of the Russian space agency Roscosmos.

Michael Hopkins is commander of the Crew Dragon spacecraft and the Crew-1 mission. Hopkins is responsible for all phases of flight, from launch to re-entry. He will also serve as an Expedition 64 flight engineer aboard the station. Selected as a NASA astronaut in 2009, Hopkins spent 166 days in space as a long-duration crew member of Expeditions 37 and 38 and completed two spacewalks totaling 12 hours and 58 minutes. Born in Lebanon, Missouri, Hopkins grew up on a farm outside Richland, Missouri. He has a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from the University of Illinois, and a master’s degree in aerospace engineering from Stanford University. Before joining NASA, Hopkins was a flight test engineer with the U.S. Air Force.

Victor Glover is the pilot of the Crew Dragon spacecraft and second-in-command for the mission. Glover is responsible for spacecraft systems and performance. He also will be a long duration space station crew member. Selected as an astronaut in 2013, this will be his first spaceflight. The California native holds a Bachelor of Science degree in general engineering, a Master of Science degree in flight test engineering, a Master of Science degree in systems engineering and a master’s degree military operational art and science. Glover is a naval aviator and was a test pilot in the F/A‐18 Hornet, Super Hornet, and EA‐18G Growler aircraft.

Shannon Walker is a mission specialist for Crew-1. As a mission specialist, she will work closely with the commander and pilot to monitor the vehicle during the dynamic launch and re-entry phases of flight. She will also be responsible for monitoring timelines, telemetry, and consumables. Once aboard the station, Walker will become a flight engineer for Expedition 64. Selected as a NASA astronaut in 2004, Walker launched to the International Space Station aboard the Russian Soyuz TMA-19 spacecraft as the co-pilot, and spent 161 days aboard the orbiting laboratory. More than 130 microgravity experiments were conducted during her stay in areas such as human research, biology, and materials science. A Houston native, Walker received a Bachelor of Arts degree in physics from Rice University in 1987, as well as a Master of Science degree and a doctorate in space physics, both from Rice University, in 1992 and 1993, respectively.

Soichi Noguchi will also be a mission specialist for Crew-1, working with the commander and pilot to monitor the vehicle during the dynamic launch and re-entry phases of flight, and keeping watch on timelines, telemetry and consumables. Noguchi will also become a long-duration crew member aboard the space station. He was selected as an astronaut candidate by the National Space Development Agency of Japan (NASDA, currently the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) in May 1996. Noguchi is a veteran of two spaceflights. During STS-114 in 2005, Noguchi became the first Japanese astronaut to perform a spacewalk outside the space station. He performed a total of three spacewalks during the mission, accumulating 20 hours and 5 minutes of spacewalking time. He launched aboard a Soyuz spacecraft in 2009 to return to the station as a long-duration crew member. The Crew Dragon will be the third spacecraft that Noguchi has flown to the orbiting laboratory.

Follow Hopkins on social media at: https://twitter.com/Astro_illini
Follow Glover on social media at: https://twitter.com/VicGlover
Follow Noguchi on social media at: https://twitter.com/Astro_Soichi
Learn more about the Commercial Crew Program at: https://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew



September 11, 2020

NASA Awards Kennedy Flight Operations Contract

NASA has selected Airbus Helicopters, Inc., of Grand Prairie, Texas, to provide comprehensive H-Care Infinite maintenance and flight operations services for three new Airbus H135 T3 aircraft and associated aerospace ground equipment at Kennedy Space Center.

The Kennedy Flight Operations Contract (KFLOC) is a firm-fixed price contract and has a maximum potential value of approximately $15.2 million. The performance period begins Oct. 1 and may extend 10 years, with a two-year base period and four additional two-year options.

KFLOC will supply Kennedy with all the services to operate and maintain the aircraft fleet and will include maintenance technicians, program management and pilots to ensure readiness in providing aerial helicopter-based services for multiple customers and programs at Kennedy.

For information about Kennedy Space Center, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/kennedy


September 04, 2020

NASA Calls on College Students to Aid in Lunar Excavation Ideas

NASA's Robotic Mining Competition
Students from Saginaw Valley State University pose for a photo at NASA's 9th Robotic Mining Competition on May 17.
First-time participants from Saginaw Valley State University pause with their robot miner in the RobotPits on the fourth day of NASA's 9th Robotic Mining Competition, May 17, at NASA's Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida. More than 40 student teams from colleges and universities around the U.S. are using their mining robots to dig in a supersized sandbox filled with BP-1, or simulated Lunar soil, gravel and rocks, and participate in other competition requirements. The Robotic Mining Competition is a NASA Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate project designed to encourage students in science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM fields. The project provides a competitive environment to foster innovative ideas and solutions that could be used on NASA's deep space missions.
Credits: NASA/Leif Heimbold

Registration is now open for teams of undergraduate and graduate students from throughout the nation to participate in NASA's Robotic Mining Competition: Lunabotics 2021.

The competition is a part of the Artemis Student Challenges, designed to engage and retain students in STEM fields by expanding opportunities for student research and design in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and math. The project provides a competitive environment to foster innovative ideas and solutions that potentially could be used on future NASA missions to the Moon or even Mars.

RMC: Lunabotics 2021 aims to train university students in the methods of NASA systems engineering, while designing, building, and operating lunar excavator prototypes. In order to have a sustainable presence on the Moon, it will be necessary to excavate lunar soil, known as regolith, to extract local resources to use as building materials, water, or even rocket fuel.

In light of the current global coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the competition has taken on a more virtual form. Teams must manage limited or suspended physical access to campuses, travel restrictions, or other impediments that may affect their ability to participate in the challenges as proposed.

This year's competition features a new 'Design It, Build It, Dig It Challenge" format in which teams can compete in the "Design It" phase of the competition only, or compete in all three portions, through to the actual build and dig portion event. Teams selected to compete in the live events will demonstrate their excavator robots next spring at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex.

During the live competition, the teams' robots will go head-to-head to determine which machine can collect and move the most regolith within a specified amount of time.

Registration will close Wednesday, Sept. 16, at noon EDT.

For more competition information, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/offices/education/centers/kennedy/technology/nasarmc.html



August 25, 2020

NASA Astronaut Jeanette Epps Joins First Operational Boeing Crew Mission to Space Station

NASA Astronaut Jeanette Epps
NASA astronaut Jeanette Epps
Credits: NASA

NASA has assigned astronaut Jeanette Epps to NASA's Boeing Starliner-1 mission, the first operational crewed flight of Boeing's CST-100 Starliner spacecraft on a mission to the International Space Station.

Epps will join NASA astronauts Sunita Williams and Josh Cassada for a six-month expedition planned for a launch in 2021 to the orbiting space laboratory. The flight will follow NASA certification after a successful uncrewed Orbital Flight Test-2 and Crew Flight Test with astronauts.

The spaceflight will be the first for Epps, who earned a bachelor's degree in physics in 1992 from LeMoyne College in her hometown of Syracuse, New York. She completed a master's degree in science in 1994 and a doctorate in aerospace engineering in 2000, both from the University of Maryland, College Park.

While earning her doctorate, Epps was a NASA Graduate Student Researchers Project fellow, authoring several journal and conference articles on her research. After completing graduate school, she worked in a research laboratory for more than two years, co-authoring several patents, before the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) recruited her. She spent seven years as a CIA technical intelligence officer before her selection as a member of the 2009 astronaut class.

NASA assigned Williams and Cassada to the Starliner-1 mission in August 2018. The spaceflight will be the first for Cassada and third for Williams, who spent long-duration stays aboard the space station on Expeditions 14/15 and 32/33.

NASA's Commercial Crew Program is working with the American aerospace industry as companies develop and operate a new generation of spacecraft and launch systems capable of carrying crews to low-Earth orbit and to the space station. Commercial transportation to and from the station will provide expanded utility, additional research time and broader opportunities for discovery on the orbital outpost.

For nearly 20 years, the station has served as a critical testbed for NASA to understand and overcome the challenges of long-duration spaceflight. As commercial companies focus on providing human transportation services to and from low-Earth orbit, NASA will concentrate its focus on building spacecraft and rockets for deep-space missions.

Follow Epps on social media at: https://twitter.com/Astro_Jeanette
and
https://www.instagram.com/jeanette.epps/



August 03, 2020

NASA Astronauts to Discuss Historic SpaceX Crew Dragon Test Flight

NASA astronauts Robert Behnken, left, and Douglas Hurley.
NASA astronauts Robert Behnken, left, and Douglas Hurley are seen inside the SpaceX Crew Dragon Endeavour spacecraft onboard the SpaceX GO Navigator recovery ship shortly after having landed in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Pensacola, Florida, Sunday, Aug. 2, 2020. The Demo-2 test flight for NASA's Commercial Crew Program was the first to deliver astronauts to the International Space Station and return them safely to Earth onboard a commercially built and operated spacecraft. Behnken and Hurley returned after spending 64 days in space.
Credits: NASA

NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley will discuss their recently completed SpaceX Demo-2 test flight mission to the International Space Station during a news conference at 4:30 p.m. EDT Tuesday, Aug. 4.

The news conference from NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston will be broadcast live on NASA Television and on the agency's website.

SpaceX's Crew Dragon, carrying Behnken and Hurley, splashed down at 2:48 p.m. Sunday under parachutes in the Gulf of Mexico, off the coast of Pensacola, Florida, and was successfully recovered by SpaceX. After returning to shore, the astronauts immediately flew back to Houston, where they were greeted by their families and invited guests – including NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine and SpaceX Chief Engineer Elon Musk – at a welcome home ceremony.

NASA's SpaceX Demo-2 test flight launched May 30 from the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Nearly 19 hours later, Crew Dragon docked to the forward port of the International Space Station's Harmony module May 31.

Behnken and Hurley contributed more than 100 hours to scientific experiments and participated in numerous public engagement events during their 62 days aboard the station. Behnken conducted four spacewalks with Expedition 63 Commander and NASA colleague Chris Cassidy to upgrade two power channels on the station's truss with new lithium-ion batteries. Overall, the astronaut duo spent 64 days in orbit, completed 1,024 orbits around Earth and traveled 27,147,284 miles.

This was SpaceX's final test flight and will provide data about the performance of the Falcon 9 rocket, Crew Dragon spacecraft and ground systems, as well as in-orbit, docking, splashdown, and recovery operations. The data will inform NASA's certification of the SpaceX crew transportation system for regular flights carrying astronauts to and from the space station. SpaceX is readying the hardware for the first rotational mission, which is scheduled to occur following NASA certification. NASA astronauts Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover, Jr., and Shannon Walker, as well as Soichi Noguchi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), are assigned to the first operational flight of Crew Dragon and spend six months aboard the station.

NASA's Commercial Crew Program works with the U.S. aerospace industry to develop safe, reliable, and cost-effective crew transportation systems that will carry astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil to the International Space Station, and back. A successful Commercial Crew Program could allow for additional research time and increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity's testbed for exploration, including helping us prepare for human exploration of the Moon and Mars.

Follow updates on the Commercial Crew Program at: https://blogs.nasa.gov/commercialcrew/
Follow Hurley on Twitter and Instagram and Behnken on Twitter.
Download b-roll and additional video content at: http://images.nasa.gov
Get the latest space station news, images and features on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.



August 02, 2020

NASA Astronauts Safely Splash Down after First Commercial Crew Flight to Space Station

NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley SpaceX's Crew Dragon Spaceship recovery.
SpaceX's Crew Dragon, carrying NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley, splashes down in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Pensacola, Florida at 2:48 p.m. EDT Aug. 2, 2020, where the spacecraft is recovered by SpaceX and brought aboard the recovery ship 'Go Navigator.'
Credits: NASA

Two NASA astronauts splashed down safely in the Gulf of Mexico Sunday for the first time in a commercially built and operated American crew spacecraft, returning from the International Space Station to complete a test flight that marks a new era in human spaceflight.

SpaceX's Crew Dragon, carrying Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley, splashed down under parachutes in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Pensacola, Florida at 2:48 p.m. EDT Sunday and was successfully recovered by SpaceX. After returning to shore, the astronauts immediately will fly back to Houston.

"Welcome home, Bob and Doug! Congratulations to the NASA and SpaceX teams for the incredible work to make this test flight possible," said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. "It's a testament to what we can accomplish when we work together to do something once thought impossible. Partners are key to how we go farther than ever before and take the next steps on daring missions to the Moon and Mars."

Behnken and Hurley's return was the first splashdown for American astronauts since Thomas Stafford, Vance Brand, and Donald "Deke" Slayton landed in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Hawaii on July 24, 1975, at the end of the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project.

NASA's SpaceX Demo-2 test flight launched May 30 from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. After reaching orbit, Behnken and Hurley named their Crew Dragon spacecraft "Endeavour" as a tribute to the first space shuttle each astronaut had flown aboard.

Nearly 19 hours later, Crew Dragon docked to the forward port of the International Space Station's Harmony module May 31.

"On behalf of all SpaceX employees, thank you to NASA for the opportunity to return human spaceflight to the United States by flying NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley," said SpaceX President and Chief Operating Officer Gwynne Shotwell. "Congratulations to the entire SpaceX and NASA team on such an extraordinary mission. We could not be more proud to see Bob and Doug safely back home—we all appreciate their dedication to this mission and helping us start the journey towards carrying people regularly to low Earth orbit and on to the Moon and Mars. And I really hope they enjoyed the ride!"

Behnken and Hurley participated in a number of scientific experiments, spacewalks and public engagement events during their 62 days aboard station. Overall, the astronaut duo spent 64 days in orbit, completed 1,024 orbits around Earth and traveled 27,147,284 statute miles.

The astronauts contributed more than 100 hours of time to supporting the orbiting laboratory's investigations. Hurley conducted the Droplet Formation Study inside of the Microgravity Science Glovebox (MSG), which evaluates water droplet formation and water flow. Hurley also conducted the Capillary Structures investigation, which studies the use of different structures and containers to manage fluids and gases.

Hurley and Behnken worked on numerous sample switch outs for the Electrolysis Measurement (EM) experiment, which looks at bubbles created using electrolysis and has implications for numerous electrochemical reactions and devices. Both crew members also contributed images to the Crew Earth Observations (CEO) study. CEO images help record how our planet is changing over time, from human-caused changes – such as urban growth and reservoir construction – to natural dynamic events, including hurricanes, floods, and volcanic eruptions.

Behnken conducted four spacewalks while on board the space station with Expedition 63 Commander and NASA colleague Chris Cassidy. The duo upgraded two power channels on the far starboard side of the station's truss with new lithium-ion batteries. They also routed power and Ethernet cables, removed H-fixtures that were used for ground processing of the solar arrays prior to their launch, installed a protective storage unit for robotic operations, and removed shields and coverings in preparation for the arrival later this year of the Nanoracks commercial airlock on a SpaceX cargo delivery mission.

Behnken now is tied for most spacewalks by an American astronaut with Michael Lopez-Alegria, Peggy Whitson, and Chris Cassidy, each of whom has completed 10 spacewalks. Behnken now has spent a total of 61 hours and 10 minutes spacewalking, which makes him the U.S. astronaut with the third most total time spacewalking, behind Lopez-Alegria and Andrew Feustel, and the fourth most overall.

The Demo-2 test flight is part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program, which has worked with the U.S. aerospace industry to launch astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil to the space station for the first time since 2011. This is SpaceX's final test flight and is providing data on the performance of the Falcon 9 rocket, Crew Dragon spacecraft and ground systems, as well as in-orbit, docking, splashdown, and recovery operations.

Crew Dragon Endeavour will return back to SpaceX's Dragon Lair in Florida for inspection and processing. Teams will examine the spacecraft's data and performance from throughout the test flight. The completion of Demo-2 and the review of the mission and spacecraft pave the way for NASA to certify SpaceX's crew transportation system for regular flights carrying astronauts to and from the space station. SpaceX is readying the hardware for the first rotational mission, called Crew-1, later this year. This mission would occur after NASA certification, which is expected to take about six weeks.

The goal of NASA's Commercial Crew Program is safe, reliable and cost-effective transportation to and from the International Space Station. This could allow for additional research time and increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity's testbed for exploration, including helping us prepare for human exploration of the Moon and Mars.



August 02, 2020

NASA Broadcasts First Splashdown of American Astronauts in 45 Years

NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley aboard the International Space Station
NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley boarded the International Space Station shortly after arriving in the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft on May 31, 2020. The two departed the station aboard the Crew Dragon Aug. 1 for a scheduled splashdown of 2:38 p.m. EDT Aug. 2 in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Pensacola, Florida.
Credits: NASA
NASA is broadcasting the return of the agency's SpaceX Demo-2 test flight with NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley from the International Space Station – the first splashdown of an American crew spacecraft in 45 years. Ongoing live coverage is airing on NASA Television and the agency's website.

Their return began at 7:35 p.m. EDT Saturday, Aug. 1, when the Crew Dragon spacecraft autonomously undocked from the International Space Station's Harmony module for a splashdown at 2:48 p.m. in the Gulf of Mexico, off the coast of Pensacola, Florida (1:48 p.m. local time).

Return coverage is as follows (all times Eastern):

Sunday, Aug. 2

  • 2:48 p.m. – Splashdown in the Gulf of Mexico
  • 4:30 p.m. – Administrator post-splashdown news conference at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, with:
  • NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine
  • Steve Stich, manager of NASA's Commercial Crew Program
  • Joel Montalbano, manager of NASA's International Space Station Program
  • Gwynne Shotwell, president and chief operating officer at SpaceX
  • SpaceX Crew-1 astronauts Mike Hopkins, Victor Glover, and Shannon Walker of NASA, and Soichi Noguchi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency
Tuesday, Aug. 4
  • 4:30 p.m. – Demo-2 crew news conference from Johnson, with NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley. A media phone bridge will be available for this event, details of which are forthcoming
Behnken and Hurley arrived at the orbiting laboratory May 31, following a successful launch May 30 on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Their return completes the test flight for the first commercially owned and operated crewed spacecraft under NASA's Commercial Crew Program.

The Commercial Crew Program works with the U.S. aerospace industry to develop safe, reliable, and cost-effective crew transportation systems that will carry astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil to the International Space Station, and back.

This is SpaceX's final test flight and is providing data on the performance of the Falcon 9 rocket, Crew Dragon spacecraft and ground systems, as well as in-orbit, docking, splashdown, and recovery operations. The data will inform NASA's certification of the SpaceX crew transportation system for regular flights carrying astronauts to and from the space station. SpaceX is readying the hardware for the first rotational mission, which would occur following NASA certification.

A successful Commercial Crew Program could allow for additional research time and increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity's testbed for exploration, including helping us prepare for human exploration of the Moon and Mars.

For more information about splashdown locations, weather criteria and recovery logistics, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/feature/top-10-things-to-know-for-nasa-s-spacex-demo-2-return
For full mission coverage, NASA's commercial crew blog, and more information about the mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew



July 24, 2020

NASA to Provide Coverage of Astronauts' Return from Space Station on SpaceX Commercial Crew Test Flight

NASA astronauts get ready to return.
The International Space Station's two newest crew members, NASA astronauts Bob Behnken, left, and Doug Hurley, are pictured having just entered the orbiting lab shortly after arriving aboard the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft.
Credits: NASA

NASA will provide live coverage of activities leading up to, during, and following the return of the agency's SpaceX Demo-2 test flight with the agency's astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley from the International Space Station.

The duo arrived at the orbiting laboratory on May 31, following a successful launch on May 30 on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

NASA and SpaceX are targeting 7:34 p.m. EDT Saturday, Aug. 1, for undocking of the Dragon "Endeavour" spacecraft from the space station and 2:42 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 2, for splashdown, which will be the first return of a commercially built and operated American spacecraft carrying astronauts from the space station.

Coverage on NASA TV and the agency's website will begin at 9:10 a.m., Aug. 1, with a short farewell ceremony on station and resume at 5:15 p.m., with departure preparations through splashdown and recovery at one of seven targeted water landing zones in the Atlantic Ocean or Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Florida.

These activities are a part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program, which has been working with the U.S. aerospace industry to launch astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil to the International Space Station for the first time since 2011. This is SpaceX's final test flight and is providing data on the performance of the Falcon 9 rocket, Crew Dragon spacecraft and ground systems, as well as in-orbit, docking, splashdown and recovery operations.

The test flight also is helping NASA certify SpaceX's crew transportation system for regular flights carrying astronauts to and from the space station. SpaceX is readying the hardware for the first rotational mission, which would occur following NASA certification.

The goal of NASA's Commercial Crew Program is safe, reliable and cost-effective transportation to and from the International Space Station. This could allow for additional research time and increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity's testbed for exploration, including helping us prepare for human exploration of the Moon and Mars.

For more information about splashdown locations, weather criteria and recovery logistics, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/feature/top-10-things-to-know-for-nasa-s-spacex-demo-2-return
For full mission coverage, NASA's commercial crew blog, and more information about the mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew



July 22, 2020

NASA, SpaceX's First Operational Commercial Crew Launch

NASA' & SpaceX's Crew-1 mission from Launch Complex 39A at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Mission specialist Shannon Walker, left, pilot Victor Glover, Crew Dragon commander Michael Hopkins – all of NASA – and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) mission specialist Soichi Noguchi, right, will launch to the International Space Station on the agency's SpaceX Crew-1 mission from Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Credits: NASA

The launch is targeted for no earlier than late-September, following a successful return from the space station and evaluation of NASA's SpaceX Demo-2 test flight with NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley.

Crew Dragon commander Michael Hopkins, pilot Victor Glover, and mission specialist Shannon Walker – all of NASA – along with Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) mission specialist Soichi Noguchi will launch on the Crew-1 mission from Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

NASA's Commercial Crew Program is working with the American aerospace industry through a public-private partnership to launch astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil. The goal of the program is to provide safe, reliable, and cost-effective transportation to and from the space station, which will allow for additional research time and will increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity's testbed for exploration. The space station remains the springboard to NASA's next great leap in space exploration, including future missions to the Moon and eventually to Mars.

For launch coverage and more information about the mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew



July 17, 2020

NASA to Broadcast Mars 2020 Perseverance Launch, Prelaunch Activities

Driving test for NASA's Mars 2020 Perseverance rover
Engineers observe the first driving test for NASA's Mars 2020 Perseverance rover in a clean room at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, on Dec. 17, 2019.
Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech
NASA is targeting 7:50 a.m. EDT Thursday, July 30, for the launch of its Mars 2020 Perseverance rover on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. The launch window is approximately two hours, with a launch opportunity every five minutes.

Live launch coverage will begin at 7 a.m., on NASA Television and the agency's website.

The mission – designed to better understand the geology and climate of Mars and seek signs of ancient life on the Red Planet – will use the robotic scientist, which weighs just under 2,300 pounds (1,043 kilograms) and is the size of a small car, to collect and store a set of rock and soil samples that could be returned to Earth by future Mars sample return missions. It also will test new technologies to benefit future robotic and human exploration of Mars.

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, managed by Caltech in Southern California, built the Perseverance rover and will manage mission operations for NASA. The agency's Launch Services Program, based at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, is responsible for launch management.

Mars 2020 Perseverance is part of America's larger Moon to Mars exploration approach that includes missions to the Moon as a way to prepare for human exploration of the Red Planet. Charged with sending the first woman and next man to the Moon by 2024, NASA will establish a sustained human presence on and around the Moon by 2028 through NASA's Artemis program.

On launch day, a "clean feed" of the launch without NASA TV commentary will be carried on the NASA TV media channel (https://www.nasa.gov/nasalive). Launch also will be available on local amateur VHF radio frequency 146.940 MHz and UHF radio frequency 444.925 MHz, heard within Brevard County on Florida's Space Coast.

For more information, visit: https://mars.nasa.gov/mars2020/

NASA's Mars 2020 press kit: https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/press_kits/mars_2020/launch/



NET July 25 -- SpaceX's Falcon 9 scheduled to launch the SAOCOM 1B satellite.

  • 7:19pm -- Space Launch Complex 40, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
  • Argentina's space agency. SAOCOM 1B is the second of two SAOCOM 1-series Earth observation satellites designed to provide radar imagery.
  • SpaceX mission broadcast starts about 15 minutes before scheduled launch time: https://www.spacex.com/webcast .


  • July 20 -- SpaceX's Falcon 9: ANASIS-II satellite launch scheduled.

  • 5:00pm - 8:55pm -- Space Launch Complex 40, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
  • Scheduled launch of the Anasis 2, or KMilSatCom 1, communications satellite for the South Korean military.
  • SpaceX mission broadcast starts about 15 minutes before scheduled launch time: https://www.spacex.com/webcast .


  • July 13, 2020

    SpaceX is STANDING DOWN

    • Falcon 9 Starlink-9 & Blacksky Global 2 Launch. Launch Pad 39A.
    • Falcon 9 ANASIS-II South Korean military satellite.Launch Pad 40.



    July 8, 2020

    7/11/10: STANDING DOWN: Next date for launch TBD

    Rescheduling to Friday, July 11 at 10:54am -- Falcon 9 Starlink-9 & Blacksky Global 2 Launch Scheduled.

  • Space Launch Complex 39A, Kennedy Space Center
  • The 10th launch of about 60 communication satellites in SpaceX's Starlink system & Two BlackSky Earth Observation Satellites.
  • SpaceX mission broadcast starts about 15 minutes before scheduled launch time: https://www.spacex.com/webcast .

  • June 22, 2020

    Kennedy Space Center Traffic and Road Closures for Upcoming Launch Activities

    Starting Thursday, June 25, 2020, Kennedy Space Center Security Police will be enforcing restricted access from the Kennedy Space Center boundary lines for the duration of the SpaceX launch attempt.

    PUBLIC ACCESS ROAD CLOSURES

    • The A. Max Brewer Memorial Parkway, east of the bridge on County Road 402 in Titusville, east to Playalinda Beach will not be open.
    • State Road 3 North at US1 in Volusia County, south to Playalinda Beach will not be open.

    July 7, 2020

    NASA to Launch of Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover

    NASA's Mars 2020 Perseverance rover
    Illustration of NASA's Mars 2020 Perseverance rover studying a Mars rock outcrop (not to scale).
    Mars 2020 is targeted for launch in July 30, 2020 (7:50-9:50am EDT) aboard an Atlas V-541 rocket from
    Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
    Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech


    June 16, 2020

    Rocket Motors for First NASA Artemis Moon Mission Arrive at Spaceport

    A train transporting the 10 booster segments for NASA.
    A train transporting the 10 booster segments for NASA's Space Launch System rocket travels across the Indian River just outside NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on June 15, 2020. NASA received transfer of the segments at a train yard in Titusville, Florida after departing June 5 from Northrop Grumman's manufacturing facility in Utah. The Shuttle Wagon that once brought the space shuttle boosters onto Kennedy along the same tracks delivered the rocket motors to the center's Rotation, Processing and Surge Facility (RPSF). Kennedy's Exploration Ground Systems team will now prepare them for assembly and integration activities that begin with offloading the segments from the railcars in the RPSF. Teams will attach the aft segments to the aft skirts in the Rotation Building, and store the remaining segments from the railcars in a Surge, or storage, building in preparation for stacking in the Vehicle Assembly Building.
    Credits: NASA/ Tony Gray

    The rocket booster segments that will help power NASA's first Artemis flight test mission around the Moon arrived at the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Monday for launch preparations.

    All 10 segments for the inaugural flight of NASA's first Space Launch System (SLS) rocket and Orion spacecraft were shipped by train from Promontory, Utah. The 10-day, cross-country journey is an important milestone toward the first launch for NASA's Artemis program.

    "The arrival of the booster segments at Kennedy is just the beginning of the SLS rocket's journey to the pad and onward to send the Orion spacecraft to the Moon," said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. "Artemis I will pave the way toward landing the first woman and the next man on the surface of the Moon in 2024 and expanding human exploration to Mars."

    Each rocket booster has individual motor segments, located between the forward assemblies and aft skirts, making up the largest single component of the entire booster. The two SLS rocket boosters, four RS-25 engines, and core stage, produce a combined total of more than 8.8 million pounds of thrust power during launch.

    "It's an exciting time at NASA's Kennedy Space Center as we welcome Artemis flight hardware and continue working toward the Artemis I launch," said Kennedy Space Center Director Bob Cabana.

    Each booster segment, weighing 180 tons, is filled with propellant and outfitted with key flight instrumentation. Due to their weight, Northrop Grumman, which is the booster lead contractor, transported the segments in specially outfitted railcars to make the 2,800-mile trip across eight states to Florida's Space Coast.

    Another train transporting the 10 booster segments for NASA.
    A train carrying the rocket motors for NASA's Space Launch System rocket after departing a Northrop Grumman manufacturing facility in Utah for NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on June 5, 2020. The 10 booster segments will power Artemis I, the first mission of NASA's Artemis program, to the Moon. The 180-ton booster segments are transported in specially outfitted railcars to make the 2,800-mile trip across eight states to Kennedy.
    Credits: Northrop Grumman

    "The fully assembled boosters for NASA's Space Launch System rocket are the largest, most powerful solid propellant boosters ever built for flight," said Bruce Tiller, manager of the SLS Boosters Office at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. "These enormous rocket motors help provide the necessary launch power for the SLS deep space rocket."

    Now that the booster segments are at Kennedy, NASA's Exploration Ground Systems team will prepare them for assembly and integration activities that start with offloading the segments. Teams will attach the aft segments to the aft skirts and offload and store the remaining segments from the railcars in preparation for stacking.

    "It is good to see booster segments rolling into the Kennedy Space Center," said Mike Bolger, program manager of Exploration Ground Systems. "The team can't wait to get started working on the boosters that will send the SLS rocket and Orion spacecraft on the first Artemis mission to the Moon."

    The solid rocket boosters are the first elements of the SLS rocket to be installed on the mobile launcher in preparation for launch. The aft booster assemblies will be lifted on to the mobile launcher, followed by the remaining booster segments, and then topped with the forward assembly.

    Teams at Kennedy have been preparing for the arrival of the booster segments by assembling and testing the aft skirts and forward assemblies of the boosters, and practicing stacking procedures with booster pathfinders, or hardware replicas, earlier this year. NASA and Northrop Grumman completed casting in 2019 of all 10 of the motor segments for both the first and second Artemis lunar missions, and are now working on the boosters for the Artemis III mission, which will land the first woman and next man on the Moon in 2024.

    With the arrival of the boosters, the only remaining pieces of hardware for the Artemis I flight test to be delivered to Kennedy are the launch vehicle stage adapter, which connects the rocket to the Orion spacecraft and will arrive this summer, and the SLS core stage, which will be transported to Kennedy by barge after the Green Run hot fire test later this year at NASA's Stennis Space Center near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi.

    Through the Artemis program, NASA will return astronauts to the Moon's surface in four years. SLS, along with NASA's Orion spacecraft, the Human Landing System and the Gateway in orbit around the Moon, will serve as NASA's backbone for deep space exploration. SLS is the only rocket that can send Orion, astronauts, and supplies to the Moon on a single mission. We'll explore more of the lunar surface than ever before, and collaborate with our commercial and international partners to establish sustainable exploration by the end of the decade. Then, we will use what we learn on and around the Moon to take the next giant leap – sending astronauts to Mars.

    For more on NASA's SLS, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/sls
    For more on NASA's Exploration Ground Systems, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/exploration/systems/ground/
    For a digital press kit with booster video and imagery, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/media/sls-booster-segments-arrive-at-ksc.html


    June 12, 2020

    Kathy Lueders Selected to Lead NASA's Human Spaceflight Office

    Kathy Lueders leads NASA's Human Spaceflight Office
    Kathy Lueders
    Credits: NASA

    NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine Friday selected Commercial Crew Program Manager Kathy Lueders to be the agency's next associate administrator of the Human Exploration and Operations (HEO) Mission Directorate. Since 2014, Lueders has directed NASA's efforts to send astronauts to space on private spacecraft, which culminated in the successful launch of Demo-2 from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida on May 30.

    "Kathy gives us the extraordinary experience and passion we need to continue to move forward with Artemis and our goal of landing the first woman and the next man on the Moon by 2024," said Bridenstine. "She has a deep interest in developing commercial markets in space, dating back to her initial work on the space shuttle program. From Commercial Cargo and now Commercial Crew, she has safely and successfully helped push to expand our nation's industrial base. Kathy's the right person to extend the space economy to the lunar vicinity and achieve the ambitious goals we've been given."

    The appointment takes effect immediately. Steve Stich is named Commercial Crew Program Manager, and Ken Bowersox returns to his role as HEO deputy associate administrator.

    Lueders began her NASA career in 1992 at the White Sands Test Facility in New Mexico where she was the Shuttle Orbital Maneuvering System and Reaction Control Systems Depot manager. She later moved to the International Space Station Program and served as transportation integration manager, where she led commercial cargo resupply services to the space station.

    She also was responsible for NASA oversight of international partner spacecraft visiting the space station, including the European Space Agency's Automated Transfer Vehicle, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's H-II Transfer Vehicle, and the Russian space agency Roscosmos' Soyuz and Progress spacecraft. She went to Kennedy as acting Commercial Crew Program Manager in 2013 and was selected as the head of the office in 2014.

    Lueders has a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance from the University of New Mexico and a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Industrial Engineering from New Mexico State University.

    "I want to thank Ken and the entire HEO team for their steady support of Kathy in making Commercial Crew such a success," added Bridenstine. "I know they'll give her the same support as she moves out in her new role. This is such a critical time for the agency and for HEO. We still need to bring Doug and Bob home safely and we're not going to lose focus. We have our sights set on the Moon and even deeper into space, and Kathy is going to help lead us there."

    For additional information in NASA's human spaceflight program, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/


    June 05, 2020

    NASA Awards Contracts for Architect-Engineer Services

    NASA has selected BRPH Architects Engineers Inc. of Melbourne, Florida, Affiliated Engineers SE, Inc. of Newberry, Florida, and Nelson Engineering Co. of Merritt Island, Florida, to provide architect-engineer services for the design and other professional services necessary to rehabilitate, modernize and develop new or existing mechanical systems for facilities and ground support systems through a regionalized multiple award.

    The firm-fixed-price indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contracts have a five year period of performance with an estimated value not to exceed $150 million.

    The work performed under the contracts will include architect-engineer services with an emphasis on ordinary and complex mechanical systems, including, but not limited to preparation of studies, designs, specifications, reports and other documents for construction of heating, ventilating and air conditioning; fire protection; water distribution and waste water collection; and analysis of pneumatic, environmental control; steam and cryogenic systems; and systems for storage and distribution of high pressure gases.

    Services may be required at the following locations:

    • NASA's Kennedy Space Center and neighboring Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida
    • Vandenberg Air Force Base, California
    • NASA's Stennis Space Center, Mississippi
    • NASA's Langley Research Center, Virginia
    • NASA's Johnson Space Center, Houston
    • NASA's White Sands Test Facility, Las Cruces, New Mexico
    • NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Alabama
    • NASA's Michoud Assembly Facility, New Orleans
    • NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland
    • NASA's Wallops Flight Facility, Wallops Island, Virginia
    • Other locations worldwide
    For information about NASA and other agency programs, visit: http://www.nasa.gov

    NASA's Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover, is designed to better understand the geology of Mars and seek signs of ancient life on the Red Planet.

    The mission will use the robotic scientist, which weighs just under 2,300 pounds and is the size of a small car, to collect and store a set of rock and soil samples that could be returned to Earth by future Mars Sample Return missions. It also will test new technology to benefit future robotic and human exploration of Mars.

    Perseverance will launch on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V 541 rocket from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. The launch of Perseverance is scheduled for 9:15 a.m. EDT July 17 and is managed by NASA's Launch Services Program. Live coverage of the launch will air on NASA TV and the agency's website.

    NASA is proactively monitoring the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation as it evolves. The agency will continue to follow guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the agency's chief health and medical officer and communicate any updates that may impact mission planning as they become available.

    The Perseverance rover was built at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California.

    The Mars 2020 mission is part of NASA's larger Moon to Mars exploration approach that includes missions to the Moon as a way to prepare for human exploration of the Red Planet. Charged with landing the first woman and the next man on the Moon by 2024, NASA will establish a sustained human presence on and around the Moon by 2028 through NASA's Artemis program. Learn more at: https://www.nasa.gov/moon2mars


    May 30, 2020

    NASA Astronauts Launch from America in Historic Test Flight of SpaceX Crew Dragon

    NASA Astronauts Launch from America in Historic Test Flight of SpaceX Crew Dragon
    For the first time in history, NASA astronauts have launched from American soil in a commercially built and operated American crew spacecraft on its way to the International Space Station. The SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft carrying NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley lifted off at 3:22 p.m. EDT Saturday on the company's Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

    "Today a new era in human spaceflight begins as we once again launched American astronauts on American rockets from American soil on their way to the International Space Station, our national lab orbiting Earth," said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. "I thank and congratulate Bob Behnken, Doug Hurley, and the SpaceX and NASA teams for this significant achievement for the United States. The launch of this commercial space system designed for humans is a phenomenal demonstration of American excellence and is an important step on our path to expand human exploration to the Moon and Mars."

    Known as NASA's SpaceX Demo-2, the mission is an end-to-end test flight to validate the SpaceX crew transportation system, including launch, in-orbit, docking and landing operations. This is SpaceX's second spaceflight test of its Crew Dragon and its first test with astronauts aboard, which will pave the way for its certification for regular crew flights to the station as part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program.

    "This is a dream come true for me and everyone at SpaceX," said Elon Musk, chief engineer at SpaceX. "It is the culmination of an incredible amount of work by the SpaceX team, by NASA and by a number of other partners in the process of making this happen. You can look at this as the results of a hundred thousand people roughly when you add up all the suppliers and everyone working incredibly hard to make this day happen."

    The program demonstrates NASA's commitment to investing in commercial companies through public-private partnerships and builds on the success of American companies, including SpaceX, already delivering cargo to the space station.

    NASA Astronauts Launch from America in Historic Test Observing Crew Dragon launch
    President Donald Trump, right, Vice President Mike Pence, and Second Lady Karen Pence watch the launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying the company's Crew Dragon spacecraft on NASA's SpaceX Demo-2 mission with NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley onboard, Saturday, May 30, 2020, from the balcony of Operations Support Building II at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. NASA's SpaceX Demo-2 mission is the first launch with astronauts of the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft and Falcon 9 rocket to the International Space Station as part of the agency's Commercial Crew Program. The test flight serves as an end-to-end demonstration of SpaceX's crew transportation system. Behnken and Hurley launched at 3:22 p.m. EDT on Saturday, May 30, from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center. A new era of human spaceflight is set to begin as American astronauts once again launch on an American rocket from American soil to low-Earth orbit for the first time since the conclusion of the Space Shuttle Program in 2011.
    Credits: NASA/Bill Ingalls

    "It's difficult to put into words how proud I am of the people who got us here today," said Kathy Lueders, NASA's Commercial Crew Program manager. "When I think about all of the challenges overcome - from design and testing, to paper reviews, to working from home during a pandemic and balancing family demands with this critical mission - I am simply amazed at what the NASA and SpaceX teams have accomplished together. This is just the beginning; I will be watching with great anticipation as Bob and Doug get ready to dock to the space station tomorrow, and through every phase of this historic mission."

    SpaceX controlled the launch of the Falcon 9 rocket from Kennedy's Launch Control Center Firing Room 4, the former space shuttle control room, which SpaceX has leased as its primary launch control center. As Crew Dragon ascended into space, SpaceX commanded the spacecraft from its mission control center in Hawthorne, California. NASA teams are monitoring space station operations throughout the flight from Mission Control Center at the agency's Johnson Space Center in Houston.

    The SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft is scheduled to dock to the space station at 10:29 a.m. Sunday, May 31. NASA Television and the agency's website are providing ongoing live coverage of the Crew Dragon's trip to the orbiting laboratory. Behnken and Hurley will work with SpaceX mission control to verify the spacecraft is performing as intended by testing the environmental control system, the displays and control system, and by maneuvering the thrusters, among other things. The first docking maneuver began Saturday, May 30, at 4:09 p.m., and the spacecraft will begin its close approach to the station at about 8:27 a.m. Sunday, May 31. Crew Dragon is designed to dock autonomously, but the crews onboard the spacecraft and the space station will diligently monitor the performance of the spacecraft as it approaches and docks to the forward port of the station's Harmony module.

    After successfully docking, the crew will be welcomed aboard the International Space Station, where they will become members of the Expedition 63 crew, which currently includes NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy. NASA will continue live coverage through hatch opening and the crew welcoming ceremony. The crew will perform tests on Crew Dragon in addition to conducting research and other tasks with the space station crew.

    Three astronauts aboard the International Space Station will participate in a live NASA Television crew news conference from orbit on Monday, June 1, beginning at 11:15 a.m. on NASA TV and the agency's website.

    Demo-2 Astronauts

    NASA Astronauts Launch from America in Historic Test NASA astronauts Robert Behnken
    NASA astronauts Robert Behnken, foreground, and Douglas Hurley, wearing SpaceX spacesuits, are seen as they depart the Neil A. Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building for Launch Complex 39A to board the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft for the Demo-2 mission launch, Saturday, May 30, 2020, at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. NASA's SpaceX Demo-2 mission is the first launch with astronauts of the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft and Falcon 9 rocket to the International Space Station as part of the agency's Commercial Crew Program. The test flight serves as an end-to-end demonstration of SpaceX's crew ransportation system. Behnken and Hurley are scheduled to launch at 3:22 p.m. EDT on Saturday, May 30, from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center. A new era of human spaceflight is set to begin as American astronauts once again launch on an American rocket from American soil to low-Earth orbit for the first time since the conclusion of the Space Shuttle Program in 2011.
    Credits: NASA/Bill Ingalls

    NASA Astronauts Launch from America in Historic Test NASA astronaut Douglas Hurley
    NASA astronaut Douglas Hurley waves as he and fellow crew member Robert Behnken depart the Neil A. Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building for Launch Complex 39A to board the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft for the Demo-2 mission launch, Saturday, May 30, 2020, at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. NASA's SpaceX Demo-2 mission is the first launch with astronauts of the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft and Falcon 9 rocket to the International Space Station as part of the agency's Commercial Crew Program. The test flight serves as an end-to-end demonstration of SpaceX's crew transportation system. Behnken and Hurley are scheduled to launch at 3:22 p.m. EDT on Saturday, May 30, from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center. A new era of human spaceflight is set to begin as American astronauts once again launch on an American rocket from American soil to low-Earth orbit for the first time since the conclusion of the Space Shuttle Program in 2011.
    Credits: NASA/Bill Ingalls

    Behnken is the joint operations commander for the mission, responsible for activities such as rendezvous, docking and undocking, as well as Demo-2 activities while the spacecraft is docked to the space station. He was selected as a NASA astronaut in 2000 and has completed two space shuttle flights. Behnken flew STS-123 in March 2008 and STS-130 in February 2010, performing three spacewalks during each mission. Born in St. Anne, Missouri, he has bachelor's degrees in physics and mechanical engineering from Washington University in St. Louis and earned a master's and doctorate in mechanical engineering from the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. Before joining NASA, he was a flight test engineer with the U.S. Air Force.

    Hurley is the spacecraft commander for Demo-2, responsible for activities such as launch, landing and recovery. He was selected as an astronaut in 2000 and has completed two spaceflights. Hurley served as pilot and lead robotics operator for both STS-127 in July 2009 and STS-135, the final space shuttle mission, in July 2011. The New York native was born in Endicott but considers Apalachin his hometown. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering from Tulane University in New Orleans and graduated from the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School in Patuxent River, Maryland. Before joining NASA, he was a fighter pilot and test pilot in the U.S. Marine Corps.

    Mission Objectives

    The Demo-2 mission is the final major test before NASA's Commercial Crew Program certifies Crew Dragon for operational, long-duration missions to the space station. As SpaceX's final flight test, it will validate all aspects of its crew transportation system, including the Crew Dragon spacecraft, spacesuits, Falcon 9 launch vehicle, launch pad 39A and operations capabilities.

    While en route to the station, Behnken and Hurley will take control of Crew Dragon for two manual flight tests, demonstrating their ability to control the spacecraft should an issue with the spacecraft's automated flight arise. On Saturday, May 30, while the spacecraft is coasting, the crew will test its roll, pitch and yaw. When Crew Dragon is about 1 kilometer (0.6 miles) below the station and moving around to the docking axis, the crew will conduct manual in-orbit demonstrations of the control system in the event it were needed. After pausing, rendezvous will resume and mission managers will make a final decision about whether to proceed to docking as Crew Dragon approaches 20 meters (66 feet).

    For operational missions, Crew Dragon will be able to launch as many as four crew members at a time and carry more than 220 pounds of cargo, allowing for an increased number crew members aboard the space station and increasing the time dedicated to research in the unique microgravity environment, as well as returning more science back to Earth.

    The Crew Dragon being used for this flight test can stay in orbit about 110 days, and the specific mission duration will be determined once on station based on the readiness of the next commercial crew launch. The operational Crew Dragon spacecraft will be capable of staying in orbit for at least 210 days as a NASA requirement.

    At the conclusion of the mission, Behnken and Hurley will board Crew Dragon, which will then autonomously undock, depart the space station, and re-enter Earth's atmosphere. Upon splashdown off Florida's Atlantic coast, the crew will be picked up by the SpaceX recovery ship and returned to the dock at Cape Canaveral.

    NASA's Commercial Crew Program is working with SpaceX and Boeing to design, build, test and operate safe, reliable and cost-effective human transportation systems to low-Earth orbit. Both companies are focused on test missions, including abort system demonstrations and crew flight tests, ahead of regularly flying crew missions to the space station. Both companies' crewed flights will be the first times in history NASA has sent astronauts to space on systems owned, built, tested and operated by private companies.

    Learn more about NASA's Commercial Crew program at: https://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew


    May 29, 2020

    ADVISORY M020-09

    Airspace, Road, Bridge and Water Closures for SpaceX Demo-2

    Launch Date: May 30, 2020
    Launch Vehicle: SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and SpaceX Crew Dragon
    Launch Pad: 39A
    Launch Window: 3:22 p.m. EDT, Instantaneous
    Targeted Launch Time: 3:22:00 p.m. EDT

    NASA KENNEDY SPACE CENTER AREA AVIATION FLIGHT RESTRICTIONS (To Include Drones)

    What: Cape Canaveral Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR)
    When: Saturday, May 30 from 11:52 a.m. until no later than 4:52 p.m. EDT.
    Where: All general aircraft operations are prohibited within a 40-nautical-mile radius of Launch Pad 39A from the surface to (but not including) 18,000 feet (located on the Melbourne VOR/DME 009-degree radial at 30.6 nautical miles).
    Pilots should obtain NOTAM information regarding affected airports.
    Aeronautical Chart in Use: Orlando TAC Chart/Orlando Class B Airspace, Enroute L-24 Chart and Jacksonville sectional

    Additional airspace restrictions: Within an airspace radius of 40 nautical miles of Pad 39A, a discrete transponder code must be obtained and clearance granted from air traffic control before entering this airspace. Continuous radio communications must be maintained. All VFR aircraft are restricted to 180 knots or less unless a variance is granted by air traffic control. Pilots should obtain NOTAM information to determine the affected airports within this radius before departure.

    NOTAM Information: St. Petersburg Flight Service Station Telephone: 1-800-992-7433 Radio frequencies: 122.5 MHz (Titusville) Transmitting/Receiving 122.1 MHz (Melbourne) Transmitting, 110.0 Receiving

    Radio Communications: FAA Orlando Approach Control Titusville/Cocoa area: 134.950 MHz Melbourne area: 132.650 MHz South Volusia County (Daytona Beach approach): 125.350 MHz Space Coast Regional Airport control tower: 118.9 MHz, 121.85 MHz ground

    PUBLIC ACCESS ROAD CLOSURES:

    • The Cape Canaveral National Seashore (Playalinda Beach) will close for launch on Friday, May 29 at sunset and will reopen after launch. The Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge will close on Friday, May 29 at sunset and will reopen after launch.
    • State Road 406 east to State Road 3, and State Road 3 from the Haulover Canal bridge south to County Road 402 leading to Titusville will be open to badged personnel only beginning on Saturday, May 30 at 6 a.m. until after a successful launch is confirmed.
    • State Road 3 from the Gate 2 Central Industry Accreditation Office Building to State Road 405 (NASA Causeway) via Space Commerce Way will be closed for launch to unauthorized vehicles beginning at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 30. NASA Causeway between the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame and the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will also close at that time. The roads will reopen after launch.

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER AREA BOATING RESTRICTIONS

    ATLANTIC OCEAN: Beginning at 6 a.m. on Saturday, May 30, and continuing through launch, a general exclusion zone will be in effect three miles offshore from the Haulover Canal, on the northern end of Kennedy Space Center, and southward to Port Canaveral. Four hours prior to launch, all ocean-going traffic will be restricted from entering an area measured from nine statute miles north and south of the launch pad and extending 64 nautical miles east into the ocean. An additional three-mile-wide exclusion zone will be extended eastward along the flight path of the space shuttle.

    BANANA RIVER: Security limits begin at the Banana River Barge Canal south of Kennedy which is located immediately above State Road 528 and extends north. The area includes KARS Park on Merritt Island. This restriction is effective beginning at 6 a.m. on Saturday, May 30.

    All boating restrictions will be lifted one hour after launch. Boating interests should monitor U.S. Coast Guard Radio transmitting on Marine Channel 16 from Port Canaveral.

    Follow along with launch activities and get more information about the mission at: https://blogs.nasa.gov/commercialcrew.

    Learn more about commercial crew and space station activities by following @Commercial_Crew, @space_station, and @ISS_Research on Twitter as well as the Commercial Crew Facebook, ISS Facebook and ISS Instagram accounts.


    May 22, 2020
    ADVISORY M020-08

    Airspace, Road, Bridge and Water Closures for SpaceX Demo-2

    Launch Date: May 27, 2020
    Launch Vehicle: SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and SpaceX Crew Dragon
    Launch Pad: 39A
    Launch Window: 4:33 p.m. EDT, Instantaneous
    Targeted Launch Time: 4:33:00 p.m. EDT

    NASA KENNEDY SPACE CENTER AREA AVIATION FLIGHT RESTRICTIONS (To Include Drones)

    • What: Cape Canaveral Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR)
    • When: Wednesday, May 27 from 12:30 p.m. until no later than 5:30 p.m. EDT.
    • Where: All general aircraft operations are prohibited within a 40-nautical-mile radius of Launch Pad 39A from the surface to (but not including) 18,000 feet (located on the Melbourne VOR/DME 009-degree radial at 30.6 nautical miles).
    Pilots should obtain NOTAM information regarding affected airports.

    Aeronautical Chart in Use: Orlando TAC Chart/Orlando Class B Airspace, Enroute L-24 Chart and Jacksonville sectional

    Additional airspace restrictions: Within an airspace radius of 40 nautical miles of Pad 39A, a discrete transponder code must be obtained and clearance granted from air traffic control before entering this airspace. Continuous radio communications must be maintained. All VFR aircraft are restricted to 180 knots or less unless a variance is granted by air traffic control. Pilots should obtain NOTAM information to determine the affected airports within this radius before departure.

    NOTAM Information: St. Petersburg Flight Service Station
    Telephone: 1-800-992-7433
    Radio frequencies: 122.5 MHz (Titusville) Transmitting/Receiving
    122.1 MHz (Melbourne) Transmitting, 110.0 Receiving

    Radio Communications: FAA Orlando Approach Control
    Titusville/Cocoa area: 134.950 MHz
    Melbourne area: 132.650 MHz
    South Volusia County (Daytona Beach approach): 125.350 MHz
    Space Coast Regional Airport control tower: 118.9 MHz, 121.85 MHz ground

    ROAD CLOSURES

    • The Cape Canaveral National Seashore (Playalinda Beach) will close for launch on Tuesday, May 26, at sunset and will reopen after launch. The Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge will close on Tuesday, May 26, at sunset and will reopen after launch.
    • State Road 406 east to State Road 3, and State Road 3 from the Haulover Canal bridge south to County Road 402 leading to Titusville will be open to badged personnel only beginning on Wednesday, May 27, at 6 a.m. until after a successful launch is confirmed.
    • State Road 3 from the Gate 2 the Central Industry Accreditation Office Building to State Road 405 (NASA Causeway) via Space Commerce Way will be closed for launch to unauthorized vehicles beginning at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, May 27. NASA Causeway between the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame and the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will also close at that time. The roads will reopen after launch.

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER AREA BOATING RESTRICTIONS

    • ATLANTIC OCEAN: Beginning at 6 a.m. on Wednesday, May 27 and continuing through launch, a general exclusion zone will be in effect three miles offshore from the Haulover Canal, on the northern end of Kennedy Space Center, and southward to Port Canaveral. Four hours prior to launch, all ocean-going traffic will be restricted from entering an area measured from nine statute miles north and south of the launch pad and extending 64 nautical miles east into the ocean. An additional three-mile-wide exclusion zone will be extended eastward along the flight path of the space shuttle.
    • INDIAN RIVER: Restrictions apply from the NASA Causeway north to Haulover Canal and east of the Indian River's main channel. Restrictions are in effect beginning at 6 a.m. on Wednesday, May 27.
    • BANANA RIVER: Security limits begin at the Banana River Barge Canal south of Kennedy which is located immediately above State Road 528 and extends north. The area includes KARS Park on Merritt Island. This restriction is effective beginning at 6 a.m. on Wednesday, May 27.
    • All boating restrictions will be lifted one hour after launch. Boating interests should monitor U.S. Coast Guard Radio transmitting on Marine Channel 16 from Port Canaveral.

    Follow along with launch activities and get more information about the mission at: https://blogs.nasa.gov/commercialcrew. Learn more about commercial crew and space station activities by following @Commercial_Crew, @space_station, and @ISS_Research on Twitter as well as the Commercial Crew Facebook, ISS Facebook and ISS Instagram accounts.


    April 09, 2020

    NASA Awards Propellants and Life Support Services Contract

    NASA has awarded a contract to AECOM Management Services Inc. of Germantown, Maryland, to support the agency's need for propellants and life support services for NASA and NASA-sponsored payloads. As a multi-user spaceport for launches of government and commercial spaceflights, NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida and nearby Cape Canaveral Air Force Station have a recurrent need for propellants and life support services.

    The Kennedy Space Center Propellants and Life Support Services II (KPLSS II) contract is a fixed-price indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract, with an award-term incentive. The maximum potential value of the contract is $165 million.

    The contract has a three-month phase-in period that begins July 1, 2020, followed by a two-year base period from Oct. 1, 2020, through Sept. 30, 2022. A two-year option period and six one-year award term periods are available which will bring the total potential period of performance to 10 years.

    The KPLSS II contract serves a critical role in supporting launch operational requirements by providing propellants and life support operations, maintenance, and engineering support for assigned systems and equipment.

    Work performed under the KPLSS II contract will include manufacturing, processing, and hands-on, day-to-day distribution of hazardous, high-pressure gases, cryogenic fluids, hypergols, and other material to spaceport customers. It also will provide critical life support services to spaceport customers working in toxic or oxygen deficient environments, as well as operations, maintenance, and engineering of facilities systems, equipment, and utilities. AECOM also will provide project management and design engineering services.

    For information about NASA and agency programs, visit: http://www.nasa.gov


    March 27, 2020

    NASA Awards Artemis Contract for Gateway Logistics Services

    Illustration: SpaceX Dragon XL on way to Gateway.
    Illustration of the SpaceX Dragon XL as it is deployed from the Falcon Heavy's
    second stage in high Earth orbit on its way to the Gateway in lunar orbit.
    Credits: SpaceX

    NASA has selected SpaceX of Hawthorne, California, as the first U.S. commercial provider under the Gateway Logistics Services contract to deliver cargo, experiments and other supplies to the agency's Gateway in lunar orbit. The award is a significant step forward for NASA's Artemis program that will land the first woman and next man on the Moon by 2024 and build a sustainable human lunar presence.

    At the Moon, NASA and its partners will gain the experience necessary to mount a historic human mission to Mars.

    SpaceX will deliver critical pressurized and unpressurized cargo, science experiments and supplies to the Gateway, such as sample collection materials and other items the crew may need on the Gateway and during their expeditions on the lunar surface.

    "This contract award is another critical piece of our plan to return to the Moon sustainably," said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. "The Gateway is the cornerstone of the long-term Artemis architecture and this deep space commercial cargo capability integrates yet another American industry partner into our plans for human exploration at the Moon in preparation for a future mission to Mars."

    NASA is planning multiple supply missions in which the cargo spacecraft will stay at the Gateway for six to 12 months at a time. These firm-fixed price, indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contracts for logistics services guarantee two missions per logistics services provider with a maximum total value of $7 billion across all contracts as additional missions are needed.

    "Returning to the Moon and supporting future space exploration requires affordable delivery of significant amounts of cargo," said SpaceX President and Chief Operating Officer Gwynne Shotwell. "Through our partnership with NASA, SpaceX has been delivering scientific research and critical supplies to the International Space Station since 2012, and we are honored to continue the work beyond Earth's orbit and carry Artemis cargo to Gateway."

    The Gateway Logistics Services contract enables NASA to order missions for as long as 12 years with a 15-year performance period and provides the ability to add new competitive providers. These missions will support NASA's plans for sustainable exploration with both international and commercial partners, while developing the experience and capabilities necessary to send humans to Mars.

    "This is an exciting new chapter for human exploration," said Mark Wiese, Deep Space Logistics manager at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. "We are bringing the innovative thinking of commercial industry into our supply chain and helping ensure we're able to support crews preparing for lunar surface expeditions by delivering the supplies they need ahead of time."

    Charged with returning to the Moon in the next four years, NASA's Artemis program will reveal new knowledge about the Moon, Earth and our origins in the solar system. The Gateway is a vital part of NASA's deep space exploration plans, along with the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket, Orion spacecraft, and human landing system that will send astronauts the Moon. One standard logistics service mission is anticipated for each Artemis SLS/Orion crewed mission to the Gateway. Gaining new experiences on and around the Moon will prepare NASA to send the first humans to Mars in the coming years, and the Gateway will play a vital role in this process.

    "We're making significant progress moving from our concept of the Gateway to reality," said Dan Hartman, Gateway program manager at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston. "Bringing a logistics provider onboard ensures we can transport all the critical supplies we need for the Gateway and on the lunar surface to do research and technology demonstrations in space that we can't do anywhere else. We also anticipate performing a variety of research on and within the logistics module."

    For more information about NASA's Moon to Mars exploration plans, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/moontomars


    March 18, 2020

    NASA: First Crew Launch to Station from America Since 2011

    NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken
    NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken familiarize themselves with SpaceX's Crew Dragon, the spacecraft that will transport them to the International Space Station as part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program. Their upcoming flight test is known as Demo-2, short for Demonstration Mission 2. The Crew Dragon will launch on SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
    Credits: NASA

    NASA's SpaceX Demo-2 flight test, which will send two astronauts to the International Space Station as part of the agency's Commercial Crew Program. This mission will be the return of human spaceflight launch capabilities to the United States and the first launch of American astronauts aboard an American rocket and spacecraft since the final space shuttle mission on July 8, 2011.

    SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket will launch Crew Dragon, with NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley aboard the spacecraft, from Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. NASA and SpaceX are currently targeting no earlier than mid-to-late May for launch.

    This second demonstration mission of the Crew Dragon spacecraft is another end-to-end flight test of SpaceX's human spaceflight system, which will include launch, docking, splashdown and recovery operations. It is the final flight test of the system before SpaceX is certified to carry out operational crew flights to and from the space station for NASA.

    NASA is proactively monitoring the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation as it evolves. The agency will continue to follow guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the agency's chief health and medical officer and communicate any updates that may impact mission planning as they become available.

    NASA's Commercial Crew Program is working with the American aerospace industry through a public-private partnership to launch astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil. The goal of the program is to provide safe, reliable, and cost-effective transportation to and from the space station, which will allow for additional research time and will increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity's testbed for exploration. The space station remains the springboard to NASA's next great leap in space exploration, including future missions to the Moon and eventually to Mars.

    For launch coverage and more information about the mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew


    SUCCESSFUL LAUNCH

    Wednesday, March 18, 2020
    Falcon 9 Launch of Starlink 5 Re-Scheduled.

    8:16am EDT. Lunch Pad 39A, Kennedy Space Center, Florida.
    A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket plans to launch the sixth batch of approximately 60 satellites for SpaceX's Starlink broadband network, the mission is designated Starlink 5.


    March 11, 2020

    Kennedy Space Center Traffic and Road Closures for Upcoming Launch Activities

    Beginning Saturday, March 14, 2020, Kennedy Space Center Security Police will be enforcing restricted access from the Kennedy Space Center boundary lines for the duration of the SpaceX launch attempt.

    PUBLIC ACCESS ROAD CLOSURES

    • State Road 3 from the Gate 2 News Media Pass and Identification Building to State Road 405 (NASA Causeway), including Space Commerce Way, will be closed to the general public at 5:30 a.m. Access to Kennedy Space Center, the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Exploration Park and Blue Origin will be limited to authorized personnel. The roads will reopen after launch.
    • NASA Causeway between U.S. 1 and Gate 3 will also be restricted to authorized personnel (badged employees and their partners). The roads will reopen after launch.
    • The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will be open; however, once capacity has been reached, no further traffic will be permitted.
    • State Road 406 in Titusville, east of the A. Max Brewer Bridge, east to Playalinda Beach will be open to all motor vehicle traffic until capacity is reached, or at 8:25 a.m., whichever comes first.
    • State Road 3 North at US1 in Volusia County, south to Playalinda Beach will be open to all motor vehicle traffic until capacity is reached, or at 8:25 a.m., whichever comes first.


    March 09, 2020

    Artemis I Spacecraft Returns to Kennedy after Successful Ohio Tests

    Orion CSM Load onto Guppy
    NASA's Orion spacecraft, wrapped up for shipping, is carefully aligned for loading into the agency's Super Guppy aircraft at the Launch and Landing Facility runway at Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Nov. 21, 2019.
    Credits: NASA/Kim Shiflett

    NASA's Kennedy Space Center will see the arrival of the Orion spacecraft for Artemis I. The crew and service module stack will be offloaded from NASA's Super Guppy aircraft after its return flight home from NASA's Plum Brook Station in Sandusky, Ohio. The offloading activity will happen the morning of March 24 at the Launch and Landing Facility at Kennedy, operated by Space Florida. Arrival and offloading are dependent on favorable weather conditions and are subject to change.

    The recently completed spacecraft spent the last several months in the world's premier space environments test facility undergoing thermal vacuum and electromagnetic environment testing to certify the vehicle for Artemis missions to the Moon. Engineers and technicians at Kennedy stand ready to welcome the spacecraft back and begin performing final processing and integration for the launch of the Artemis I mission.

    Learn more about NASA's Artemis I mission at: https://www.nasa.gov/artemis-1


    Falcon 9 : SpaceX CRS 20
    Launch scheduled for March 6 at 11:49pm EST

    Launch pad 40, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL. A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch the 22nd Dragon spacecraft mission on its 20th operational cargo delivery flight to the International Space Station.

    SpaceX coverage of launch begins 15 minutes before launch at: https://www.spacex.com/webcast


    February 28, 2020

    NASA Awards Launch Services Contract for the Psyche Mission

    NASA has selected SpaceX of Hawthorne, California, to provide launch services for the agency's Psyche mission. The Psyche mission currently is targeted to launch in July 2022 on a Falcon Heavy rocket from Launch Complex 39A at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

    The total cost for NASA to launch Psyche and the secondary payloads is approximately $117 million, which includes the launch service and other mission related costs.

    The Psyche mission will journey to a unique metal-rich asteroid, also named Psyche, which orbits the Sun between Mars and Jupiter. The asteroid is considered unique, as it appears to largely be made of the exposed nickel-iron core of an early planet – one of the building blocks of our solar system.

    Deep within rocky, terrestrial planets, including Earth, scientists infer the presence of metallic cores, but these lie unreachably far below the planet's rocky mantles and crusts. Because we cannot see or measure Earth's core directly, the mission to Psyche offers a unique window into the violent history of collisions and accretion that created terrestrial planets.

    The launch of Psyche will include two secondary payloads: Escape and Plasma Acceleration and Dynamics Explorers (EscaPADE), which will study the Martian atmosphere, and Janus, which will study binary asteroids.

    NASA's Launch Services Program at Kennedy Space Center in Florida will manage the SpaceX launch service. The mission is led by Arizona State University. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory is responsible for the mission's overall management, system engineering, integration, testing and mission operations. Maxar Space Solutions is providing a high-power solar electric propulsion spacecraft chassis.

    For more information about the Psyche mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/psyche


    February 14, 2020

    NASA Awards Contract to Launch CubeSat to Moon from Virginia

    Wallops Flight Facility.
    Part of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia, Launch Complex 2 is Rocket Lab's second launch site for the Electron rocket. Rocket Lab will launch NASA's Cislunar Autonomous Positioning System Technology Operations and Navigation Experiment (CAPSTONE) CubeSat mission to the Moon from the Virginia launch site in early 2021.
    Credits: Rocket Lab

    NASA has selected Rocket Lab of Huntington Beach, California, to provide launch services for the Cislunar Autonomous Positioning System Technology Operations and Navigation Experiment (CAPSTONE) CubeSat.

    Rocket Lab, a commercial launch provider licensed by the Federal Aviation Administration, will launch the 55-pound CubeSat aboard an Electron rocket from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. After launch, the company's Photon platform will deliver CAPSTONE to a trans-lunar injection. The engine firing will allow the CubeSat to break free of Earth's gravity and head to the Moon. Then, CAPSTONE will use its own propulsion system to enter a cislunar orbit, which is the orbital area near and around the Moon. The mission is targeted for launch in early 2021 and will be the second lunar mission to launch from Virginia.

    NASA's CAPSTONE CubeSat..
    Updated illustration of NASA's CAPSTONE CubeSat. The spacecraft design has changed since the mission contract award in September 2019.
    Credits: NASA

    "NASA's Launch Services Program (LSP) is pleased to provide a low-cost launch service for CAPSTONE and to work with Rocket Lab on this inaugural NASA launch from their new launch site at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport in Virginia," said Ana Rivera, LSP program integration manager for CAPSTONE at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. LSP will manage the launch service.

    "This mission is all about quickly and more affordably demonstrating new capabilities, and we are partnering with small businesses to do it," said Christopher Baker, Small Spacecraft Technology program executive at the agency's headquarters in Washington. "This is true from the perspective of CAPSTONE's development timeline, operational objectives, navigation demonstration and its quickly procured commercial launch aboard a small rocket."

    Following a three-month trip to the Moon, CAPSTONE will enter a near rectilinear halo orbit, which is a highly elliptical orbit over the Moon's poles, to verify its characteristics for future missions and conduct a navigation demonstration with NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. CAPSTONE will serve as a pathfinder for the lunar spaceship Gateway, a key component of NASA's Artemis program.

    "CAPSTONE is a rapid, risk-tolerant demonstration that sets out to learn about the unique, seven-day cislunar orbit we are also targeting for Gateway," said Marshall Smith, director of human lunar exploration programs at NASA Headquarters. "We are not relying only on this precursor data, but we can reduce navigation uncertainties ahead of our future missions using the same lunar orbit."

    The firm-fixed-price launch contract is valued at $9.95 million. In September, NASA awarded a $13.7 million contract to Advanced Space of Boulder, Colorado, to develop and operate the CubeSat.

    After a final design review this month, Advanced Space and Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems Inc. of Irvine, California, will start building and testing the spacecraft.

    CAPSTONE is managed by NASA's Small Spacecraft Technology program within the agency's Space Technology Mission Directorate. Advanced Exploration Systems within NASA's Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate supports the launch and mission operations.

    To learn more about NASA's Launch Services Program, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/centers/kennedy/launchingrockets/index.html

    To learn more about NASA's investments in space technology, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/spacetech


    February 13, 2020

    Kennedy Space Center Traffic and Road Closures for Upcoming Launch Activities

    Launch rescheduled to Sunday, February 16 at 10:25am.

    Starting Saturday, Feb. 15, 2020, Kennedy Space Center Security Police will be enforcing restricted access from the Kennedy Space Center boundary lines for the duration of the SpaceX launch attempt.

    PUBLIC ACCESS ROAD CLOSURES

    • State Road 3 from the Gate 2 News Media Pass and Identification Building to State Road 405 (NASA Causeway), including Space Commerce Way, will be closed to the general public at 6:30 a.m. Access to Kennedy Space Center, the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Exploration Park and Blue Origin will be limited to authorized personnel. The roads will reopen after launch.
    • NASA Causeway between U.S. 1 and Gate 3 will also be restricted to authorized personnel (badged employees and their partners). The roads will reopen after launch.
    • The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will be open; however, once capacity has been reached, no further traffic will be permitted.
    • State Road 406 in Titusville, east of the A. Max Brewer Bridge, east to Playalinda Beach will be open to all motor vehicle traffic until capacity is reached, or at 9:30 a.m., whichever comes first.
    • State Road 3 North at U.S. 1 in Volusia County, south to Playalinda Beach will be open to all motor vehicle traffic until capacity is reached, or at 9:30 a.m., whichever comes first.


    February 10, 2020

    Solar Orbiter Launch Takes Solar Science to New Heights

    Liftoff of the Solar Orbiter
    Launch of the ESA/NASA Solar Orbiter mission to study the Sun from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on Feb. 9, 2020
    Credits: Jared Frankle
    Solar Orbiter, a new collaborative mission between ESA (European Space Agency) and NASA to study the Sun, launched at 11:03 p.m. EST Sunday on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

    At 12:24 a.m. Monday, mission controllers at the European Space Operations Centre in Darmstadt, Germany, received a signal from the spacecraft indicating that its solar panels had successfully deployed.

    In the first two days after launch, Solar Orbiter will deploy its instrument boom and several antennas that will communicate with Earth and gather scientific data. Solar Orbiter is on a unique trajectory that will allow its comprehensive set of instruments to provide humanity with the first-ever images of the Sun's poles. This trajectory includes 22 close approaches to the Sun, bringing the spacecraft within the orbit of Mercury to study the Sun and its influence on space.

    "As humans, we have always been familiar with the importance of the Sun to life on Earth, observing it and investigating how it works in detail, but we have also long known it has the potential to disrupt everyday life should we be in the firing line of a powerful solar storm," said Günther Hasinger, ESA director of Science. "By the end of our Solar Orbiter mission, we will know more about the hidden force responsible for the Sun's changing behavior and its influence on our home planet than ever before."

    Solar Orbiter will spend about three months in its commissioning phase, during which the mission team will run checks on the spacecraft's 10 scientific instruments to ensure they are working properly. It will take Solar Orbiter about two years to reach its primary science orbit.

    Solar Orbiter combines two main modes of study. In-situ instruments will measure the environment around the spacecraft, detecting such things as electric and magnetic fields and passing particles and waves. The remote-sensing instruments will image the Sun from afar, along with its atmosphere and its outflow of material, collecting data that will help scientists understand the Sun's inner workings.

    During the mission's cruise phase, which lasts until November 2021, the spacecraft's in-situ instruments will gather scientific data about the environment around the spacecraft, while the remote-sensing telescopes will focus on calibration to prepare for science operations near the Sun. The cruise phase includes three gravity assists that Solar Orbiter will use to draw its orbit closer to the Sun: two past Venus in December 2020 and August 2021, and one past Earth in November 2021.

    Following its Earth gravity assist, Solar Orbiter will begin the primary phase of its mission – leading up to its first close pass by the Sun in 2022 – at about a third the distance from the Sun to Earth. Throughout its mission, Solar Orbiter will use successive Venus gravity assists to draw its orbit closer to the Sun and lift it out of the ecliptic plane.

    Solar Orbiter's unique orbit will bring the spacecraft out of the plane that roughly aligns with the Sun's equator where Earth and the other planets orbit. Spacecraft launched from Earth naturally stay in this plane, which means that telescopes on Earth and telescopes on satellites have limited views of the Sun's north and south poles.

    A previous ESA-NASA mission, Ulysses, launched in 1990, achieved an inclined orbit giving scientists their first measurements of the space around the Sun in this critical region. Unlike Ulysses, Solar Orbiter carries cameras that will provide the first-ever images of the Sun's poles. This vital information will help scientists fill in the gaps in models of the Sun's magnetic field, which drives the Sun's activity.

    "Solar Orbiter is going to do amazing things. Combined with the other recently launched NASA missions to study the Sun, we are gaining unprecedented new knowledge about our star," said Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA's associate administrator for Science at the agency's headquarters in Washington. "Together with our European partners, we're entering a new era of heliophysics that will transform the study of the Sun and help make astronauts safer as they travel on Artemis program missions to the Moon."

    ESA's European Space Research and Technology Centre in the Netherlands manages the development effort. The European Space Operations Center in Germany will operate Solar Orbiter after launch. Solar Orbiter was built by Airbus Defense and Space. The spacecraft contains 10 instruments. Nine were provided by ESA member states and ESA. NASA provided one instrument, the Solar Orbiter Heliospheric Imager (SoloHI), and an additional sensor, the Heavy Ion Sensor, which is part of the Solar Wind Analyzer instrument suite.

    Solar Orbiter complements a fleet of NASA Heliophysics spacecraft observing the star we live with and its effects on the space we travel through.

    Learn more about Solar Orbiter on the NBBD's ULA website.


    February 07, 2020

    NASA Kennedy Director Bob Cabana Hosts 'State of NASA' Media Teleconference

    NASA's Kennedy Space Center director, Bob Cabana will host a media teleconference on Monday, Feb. 10. The teleconference coincides with the White House's release of NASA's Fiscal Year 2021 budget.

    NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine will speak to the agency's workforce at 1 p.m. EST from Stennis Space Center, near Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. His remarks will air live on NASA Television and the agency's website.

    At 3:30 p.m., Cabana will brief members of the media on the latest activities at the multi-user spaceport and Kennedy's role in the agency's Artemis program that will land the first woman and the next man on the Moon by 2024.

    The agency budget proposal and supporting information will be available online at noon on Feb.10 at: https://www.nasa.gov/budget

    For more information about NASA's Kennedy Space Center, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/kennedy


    February 04, 2020

    NASA Awards Launch Services Contract for Earth Science Mission

    NASA has selected SpaceX of Hawthorne, California, to provide launch services for the agency's Plankton, Aerosol, Cloud, ocean Ecosystem (PACE) mission.

    The total cost for NASA to launch PACE is approximately $80.4 million, which includes the launch service and other mission related costs. The PACE mission currently is targeted to launch in December 2022 on a Falcon 9 Full Thrust rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

    The PACE mission represents the nation's next great investment in understanding and protecting our home planet. The mission will provide global ocean color, cloud, and aerosol data that will provide unprecedented insights into oceanographic and atmospheric responses to Earth's changing climate. PACE will help scientists investigate the diversity of organisms fueling marine food webs and the U.S. economy, and deliver advanced data products to reduce uncertainties in global climate models and improve our interdisciplinary understanding of the Earth system.

    NASA's Launch Services Program at the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Florida will manage the SpaceX launch service. The PACE mission is managed at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, for the agency's Science Mission Directorate in Washington.

    For more information about NASA's Earth science programs, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/earth


    January 27, 2020

    Next SpaceX Space Station Cargo Launch

    Falcon 9 focket lifts off
    A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 12:29 p.m. EST on Dec. 5, 2019, carrying the Dragon spacecraft on the company's 19th Commercial Resupply Services mission to the International Space Station.
    Credits: NASA/Tony Gray, Tim Terry and Kevin O'Connell

    A SpaceX Dragon cargo spacecraft is scheduled to launch on a Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS) in Florida no earlier than March 2 at 1:45 a.m. EST.

    Each resupply mission to the station delivers scientific investigations in the areas of biology and biotechnology, physical sciences, Earth and space science. Advances in these areas will help to keep astronauts healthy during long-duration space travel and demonstrate technologies for future human and robotic exploration beyond low-Earth orbit to the Moon and Mars. Space station research through the ISS National Lab also provides opportunities for other U.S. government agencies, private industry, and academic and research institutions, to conduct microgravity research that leads to new technologies, medical treatments, and products that improve life on Earth.

    Cargo resupply from U.S. companies ensures a national capability to deliver critical science research to the space station, significantly increasing NASA's ability to conduct new investigations at the only laboratory in space. This is the 20th SpaceX mission under NASA's Commercial Resupply Services contract.

    The International Space Station is a convergence of science, technology and human innovation that demonstrates new technologies and enables research not possible on Earth. The space station has been occupied continuously since November 2000. In that time, 239 people and a variety of international and commercial spacecraft have visited the orbiting laboratory. The space station remains the springboard to in human exploration, including future missions to the Moon that will lead to America's next giant leap – sending astronauts to Mars.

    For launch coverage and more information about the mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/spacex


    January 19, 2020

    NASA, SpaceX Complete Final Major Flight Test of Crew Spacecraft

    NASA and SpaceX completed a launch escape demonstration.
    NASA and SpaceX completed a launch escape demonstration of the company's Crew Dragon spacecraft and Falcon 9 rocket on Jan. 19, 2020. The test began at 10:30 a.m. EST with liftoff from Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on a mission to show the spacecraft's capability to safely separate from the rocket in the unlikely event of an inflight emergency.
    Credits: NASA Television
    NASA and SpaceX completed a launch escape demonstration of the company's Crew Dragon spacecraft and Falcon 9 rocket Sunday. This was the final major flight test of the spacecraft before it begins carrying astronauts to the International Space Station under NASA's Commercial Crew Program.

    The launch escape test began at 10:30 a.m. EST with liftoff from historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on a mission to show the spacecraft's capability to safely separate from the rocket in the unlikely event of an inflight emergency.

    "This critical flight test puts us on the cusp of returning the capability to launch astronauts in American spacecraft on American rockets from American soil," said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. "We are thrilled with the progress NASA's Commercial Crew Program is making and look forward to the next milestone for Crew Dragon."

    As part of the test, SpaceX configured Crew Dragon to trigger a launch escape about 1.5 minutes after liftoff. All major functions were executed, including separation, engine firings, parachute deployment and landing. Crew Dragon splashed down at 10:38 a.m. just off the Florida coast in the Atlantic Ocean.

    "As far as we can tell thus far, it's a picture perfect mission. It went as well as one can possibly expect," said Elon Musk, Chief Engineer at SpaceX. "This is a reflection of the dedication and hard work of the SpaceX and NASA teams to achieve this goal. Obviously, I'm super fired up. This is great." Teams of personnel from SpaceX and the U.S. Air Force 45th Operations Group's Detachment-3 out of Patrick Air Force Base will recover the spacecraft for return to SpaceX facilities in Florida and begin the recovery effort of the Falcon 9, which broke apart as planned.

    "The past few days have been an incredible experience for us," said astronaut Doug Hurley. "We started with a full dress rehearsal of what Bob and I will do for our mission. Today, we watched the demonstration of a system that we hope to never use, but can save lives if we ever do. It took a lot of work between NASA and SpaceX to get to this point, and we can't wait to take a ride to the space station soon."

    Prior to the flight test, teams completed launch day procedures for the first crewed flight test, from suit-up to launch pad operations. The joint teams now will begin the full data reviews that need to be completed prior to NASA astronauts flying the system during SpaceX's Demo-2 mission.

    NASA's Commercial Crew Program is working with the American aerospace industry as companies develop and operate a new generation of spacecraft and launch systems capable of carrying crews to low-Earth orbit and the International Space Station. Commercial human space transportation to and from the station will provide expanded utility, additional research time and broader opportunities for discovery on the orbiting laboratory. The program also has the benefit of facilitating and promoting for America a vibrant economy in low-Earth orbit.


    January 16, 2020

    Kennedy Space Center Traffic and Road Closures for SpaceX Starlink Launch Activities

    On Monday, Jan. 20, 2020, Kennedy Space Center Security Police will be enforcing restricted access from the Kennedy Space Center boundary lines for the duration of a SpaceX launch attempt.

    PUBLIC ACCESS ROAD CLOSURES

    • State Road 3 from the Gate 2 News Media Pass and Identification Building to State Road 405 (NASA Causeway), including Space Commerce Way, will be closed to the general public at 8:30 a.m. Access to Kennedy Space Center, the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Exploration Park and Blue Origin will be limited to authorized personnel. The roads will reopen after launch.
    • NASA Causeway between U.S. 1 and Gate 3 will also be restricted to authorized personnel (badged employees and their partners). The roads will reopen after launch.
    • The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will be open; however, once capacity has been reached, no further traffic will be permitted.
    • The A. Max Brewer Bridge on State Road 406 in Titusville, east to Playalinda Beach, will be open to all motor vehicle traffic until capacity is reached, or at 11:15 a.m., whichever comes first.
    • State Road 3 North at US1 in Volusia County, south to Playalinda Beach, will be open to all motor vehicle traffic until capacity is reached, or at 11:15 a.m., whichever comes first.


    January 15, 2020

    Kennedy Space Center Traffic and Road Closures for SpaceX In-Flight Abort Test Activities

    Expect heavy traffic on and around Kennedy Space Center on Saturday, Jan. 18, 2020, due to the upcoming launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 39A at Kennedy Space Center. The launch window is between 8 a.m. and 12 p.m. EST. Kennedy Space Center Security Police will be enforcing restricted access from the Kennedy Space Center boundary lines for the duration of the SpaceX launch attempt.

    PUBLIC ACCESS ROAD CLOSURES

    • State Road 3 from Gate 2 News Media Pass and Identification Building to State Road 405 (NASA Causeway), including Space Commerce Way, will be closed to the general public at 4 a.m. Access to Kennedy Space Center, the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Exploration Park and Blue Origin will be limited to authorized personnel.
    • The A. Max Brewer Bridge on State Road 406 in Titusville, east to Playalinda Beach, will be closed to all motor vehicle traffic at 3:30 a.m.
    • State Road 3 North at US 1 in Volusia County, south to Playalinda Beach, will be closed to all motor vehicle traffic at 3:30 a.m.


    Jan. 14, 2020

    NASA to Provide Coverage of SpaceX Crew Dragon Launch Escape Test

    NASA will provide coverage of the upcoming prelaunch and launch activities for the SpaceX Crew Dragon launch escape demonstration, as part of the agency's Commercial Crew Program, which is working with U.S. companies to launch American astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil.

    NASA and SpaceX are targeting 8 a.m. EST Saturday, Jan. 18, for launch of the company's In-Flight Abort Test, which will demonstrate Crew Dragon's ability to safely escape the Falcon 9 rocket in the event of a failure during launch. The abort test has a four-hour launch window.

    The SpaceX Crew Dragon will launch from historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. SpaceX will intentionally trigger Crew Dragon to perform the launch escape prior to 1 minute, 30 seconds into flight. Falcon 9 is expected to aerodynamically break up offshore over the Atlantic Ocean. The spacecraft is planned to land under parachutes offshore in the ocean.

    Saturday, Jan. 18 7:45 a.m. – NASA TV test coverage begins for the 8 a.m. liftoff

    NASA TV HERE

    The goal of NASA's Commercial Crew Program is safe, reliable and cost-effective transportation to and from the International Space Station, which could allow for additional research time and increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity's orbiting testbed for exploration.


    December 18, 2019

    NASA Awards Launch Services Contract for Environmental Satellite Mission

    NASA has selected United Launch Services LLC (ULS) of Centennial, Colorado, to provide launch services for the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite-T (GOES-T) mission, which will provide advanced imagery and atmospheric measurements of Earth's weather, oceans and environment, real-time mapping of total lightning activity, and improved monitoring of solar activity and space weather.

    The total cost for NASA to launch GOES-T is approximately $165.7 million, which includes the launch service and other mission related costs.

    The GOES-T mission currently is targeted to launch in December 2021 on an Atlas V 541 rocket from Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. GOES-T is the third spacecraft in the next generation GOES-R Series of geostationary weather satellites operated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The GOES-R Series includes GOES-R, S, T, and U.

    NASA's Launch Services Program at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida will manage the ULS launch service. The GOES-R Flight Projects Office is managed by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. The GOES-R Program is managed by NOAA.

    For more information about NASA programs and missions, visit: https://www.nasa.gov


    December 18, 2019

    Kennedy Space Center Traffic and Road Closures for Upcoming Launch Activities

    Boeing Starliner fready for liftoff.
    There will be heavy traffic on and around Kennedy Space Center on Friday, Dec. 20, for the Boeing OFT Starliner launch.
    Credits: Boeing

    Expect heavy traffic on and around Kennedy Space Center on Friday, December 20, 2019, due to the upcoming United Launch Alliance launch of the Boeing Starliner spacecraft from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. Launch is scheduled for 6:36 a.m. with an instantaneous window.

    PUBLIC ACCESS ROAD CLOSURES

    Beginning Friday, Dec. 20 at 3:30 a.m., Kennedy Space Center Security Police will be enforcing restricted access from the Kennedy Space Center boundary lines for the duration of the launch attempt. Security police will operate checkpoints at the property lines listed below:

    • State Road 3 from Gate 2 News Media Pass and Identification Building to State Road 405 (NASA Causeway), including Space Commerce Way. Access to Kennedy Space Visitor Complex, Exploration Park and Blue Origin will be limited to authorized personnel and invited launch guests.
    • The A. Max Brewer Memorial Bridge on State Road 406 in Titusville, east of Playalinda Beach. The Playalinda Beach area will be closed to the general public.
    • The Haulover Canal Bridge will be closed at 3:30 a.m. which will restrict access from the Oak Hill area

    Please expect delays and plan accordingly.



    December 11, 2019

    NASA Invites Media to View the Solar Orbiter Spacecraft Before February Launch

    The Solar Orbiter spacecraft at Astrotech Space Operations in Titusville.
    At Astrotech Space Operations in Titusville, Florida, the Solar Orbiter spacecraft was removed from its shipping container on Nov. 15, 2019.
    Credits: NASA/Kim Shiflett

    Media have been invited to view the Solar Orbiter spacecraft at the Astrotech Space Operations payload processing facility in Titusville, Florida. The Solar Orbiter will be the first mission to provide images of the Sun's poles.

    The Solar Orbiter will observe the Sun with high spatial resolution telescopes as well as capture observations in the environment directly surrounding the spacecraft – together creating a one-of-a-kind picture of how the Sun can affect the space environment throughout the solar system. The spacecraft also will provide the first ever images of the Sun's poles and the never-before-observed magnetic environment there, which helps drive the Sun's 11-year solar cycle and its periodic outpouring of solar storms. Solar Orbiter is scheduled to launch on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket at 11:27 p.m. EST Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2020, from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

    About the Solar Orbiter

    Solar Orbiter is an international cooperative mission between the European Space Agency (ESA) and NASA. ESA's Engineering & Test Center (ESTEC) in The Netherlands is managing the development effort. The spacecraft has been developed by Airbus. The European Space Operations Center (ESOC) in Germany will operate Solar Orbiter after launch.

    Solar Orbiter was built by Airbus Defence and Space, and contains 10 instruments: nine provided by the European Space Agency (ESA) and various European countries. NASA provided an instrument and a sensor, the SoloHI instrument and the Heavy Ion Sensor, which is part of the Solar Wind Analyzer (SWA) instrument suite. The instruments are EPD - Energetic Particle Detector, EUI - Extreme Ultraviolet Imager, MAG- Magnetometer, METIS – Coronagraph, PHI – Polarimetric & Helioseismic Imager, RPW – Radio & Plasma Waves, SoloHI – Heliospheric Imager, SPICE – Spectral Imaging of the Coronal Environment, STIX – Spectrometer/Telescope for Imaging X-rays, and SWA – Solar Wind Analyzer.

    The Solar Orbiter mission is managed by ESA. NASA's Launch Services Program is responsible for launch management. United Launch Alliance of Centennial, Colorado, is the provider of the Atlas V launch service.

    For more information about the Solar Orbiter mission, visit: https://sci.esa.int/web/solar-orbiter


    December 10, 2019

    NASA, Boeing to Hold Media Teleconference on Orbital Flight Test Mission

    Atlas V rocket, topped by the Boeing CST-100 Starliner spacecraft, stand on Space Launch Complex 41
    A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket, topped by the Boeing CST-100 Starliner spacecraft, stand on Space Launch Complex 41 at Florida's Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on Dec. 4, 2019. The vehicle was in place on the launch pad for Boeing's wet dress rehearsal ahead of the upcoming Orbital Flight Test, an uncrewed mission to the International Space Station for NASA's Commercial Crew Program.
    Credits: Boeing

    NASA and Boeing will hold a news teleconference Thursday, Dec. 12, following the agency's Flight Readiness Review for Boeing's uncrewed Orbital Flight Test (OFT) to the International Space Station, as part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program.

    The teleconference will begin no earlier than 2 p.m. EST, or approximately one hour after the review ends. The start time will be adjusted as necessary.

    Audio of the teleconference will stream live online at: https://www.nasa.gov/live

    Briefing participants include:

    • Phil McAlister, director, NASA Commercial Spaceflight Development
    • Kathy Lueders, manager, NASA Commercial Crew Program
    • Kirk Shireman, manager, International Space Station Program
    • John Mulholland, vice president and program manager, Boeing Commercial Crew Program
    • Steve Koerner, director, Flight Operations
    Launch of Boeing's CST-100 Starliner spacecraft is targeted for 6:36 a.m. Friday, Dec. 20, on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Boeing's uncrewed flight test will be Starliner's maiden mission to the International Space Station, which, is part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program to return human spaceflight launches to the space station from American soil on America spacecraft and rockets.

    For launch countdown coverage, NASA's launch blog, and more information about the mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew


    December 05, 2019

    SpaceX Dragon Heads to Space Station with NASA Science, Cargo

    Wreaths Across America at out National Veterans Cemetary.
    SpaceX launches its 19th cargo resupply mission to the International Space Station at 12:29 p.m. EST Dec. 5, 2019, from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
    Credits: NASA TV
    A SpaceX Dragon cargo spacecraft is on its way to the International Space Station after launching at 12:29 p.m. EST Wednesday. Dragon will deliver more than 5,700 pounds of NASA cargo and science investigations, including studies of malting barley in microgravity, the spread of fire, and bone and muscle loss.

    The spacecraft launched on a Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida and is scheduled to arrive at the orbital outpost on Sunday, Dec. 8. Coverage of the spacecraft's approach and arrival at the space station will begin at 4:30 a.m. on NASA Television and the agency's website.

    Dragon will join three other spacecraft currently at the station. Expedition 61 Commander Luca Parmitano of ESA (European Space Agency) will grapple Dragon with NASA astronaut Andrew Morgan acting as a backup. NASA's Jessica Meir will assist the duo by monitoring telemetry during Dragon's approach. Coverage of robotic installation to the Earth-facing port of the Harmony module will begin at 8 a.m.

    This delivery, SpaceX's 19th cargo flight to the space station under NASA's Commercial Resupply Services contract, will support dozens of new and existing investigations. NASA's research and development work aboard the space station contributes to the agency's deep space exploration plans, including future Moon and Mars missions.

    Here are details about some of the scientific investigations Dragon is delivering:

    A Better Picture of Earth's Surface
    The Hyperspectral Imager Suite (HISUI) is a next-generation, hyperspectral Earth imaging system. Every material on Earth's surface – rocks, soil, vegetation, snow/ice and human-made objects – has a unique reflectance spectrum. HISUI provides space-based observations for tasks such as resource exploration and applications in agriculture, forestry and other environmental areas.

    Malting Barley in Microgravity
    Malting ABI Voyager Barley Seeds in Microgravity tests an automated malting procedure and compares malt produced in space and on the ground for genetic and structural changes. Understanding how barley responds to microgravity could identify ways to adapt it for nutritional use on long-duration spaceflights.

    Spread of Fire
    The Confined Combustion investigation examines the behavior of flames as they spreads in differently shaped confined spaces in microgravity. Studying flames in microgravity gives researchers a better look at the underlying physics and basic principles of combustion by removing gravity from the equation.

    Keeping Bones and Muscles Strong
    Rodent Research-19 (RR-19) investigates myostatin (MSTN) and activin, molecular signaling pathways that influence muscle degradation, as possible targets for preventing muscle and bone loss during spaceflight and enhancing recovery following return to Earth. This study also could support the development of therapies for a wide range of conditions that cause muscle and bone loss on Earth. Checking for Leaks
    NASA is launching Robotic Tool Stowage (RiTS), a docking station that allows Robotic External Leak Locator (RELL) units to be stored on the outside of space station, making it quicker and simpler to deploy the instruments. The leak locator is a robotic, remote-controlled tool that helps mission operators detect the location of an external leak and rapidly confirm a successful repair. These capabilities can be applied to any place that humans live in space, including NASA's lunar Gateway and eventually habitats on the Moon, Mars, and beyond.

    These are just a few of the hundreds of investigations providing opportunities for U.S. government agencies, private industry, and academic and research institutions to conduct microgravity research that leads to new technologies, medical treatments and products that improve life on Earth. Conducting science aboard the orbiting laboratory will help us learn how to keep astronauts healthy during long-duration space travel and demonstrate technologies for future human and robotic exploration beyond low-Earth orbit to the Moon and Mars.

    For almost 20 years, humans have lived and worked continuously aboard the International Space Station, advancing scientific knowledge and demonstrating new technologies, making research breakthroughs not possible on Earth that will enable long-duration human and robotic exploration into deep space. As a global endeavor, more than 230 people from 18 countries have visited the unique microgravity laboratory that has hosted more than 2,500 research investigations from researchers in 106 countries.

    For more information about the International Space Station, its research, and crew, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/station


    December 03, 2019

    Kennedy Space Center Traffic and Road Closures for Upcoming Launch Activities

    Expect heavy traffic on and around Kennedy Space Center on Wednesday, December 4, 2019, due to the upcoming launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The launch window is between 12:45 p.m. and 12:55 p.m. EDT.

    PUBLIC ACCESS ROAD CLOSURES
    Starting Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019, Kennedy Space Center Security Police will be enforcing restricted access from the Kennedy Space Center boundary lines for the duration of the SpaceX launch attempt.

    • State Road 3 from Gate 2 to State Road 405 (NASA Causeway), including Space Commerce Way, will be closed to the general public at 8:45 a.m. Access to Kennedy Space Center, the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Exploration Park and Blue Origin will be limited to authorized personnel. The roads will reopen after launch.
    • The A. Max Brewer Bridge on State Road 406 in Titusville, east to Playalinda Beach, will be open to all motor vehicle traffic until capacity is reached, or at 11:45 a.m., whichever comes first.
    • State Road 3 North at US 1 in Volusia County, south to Playalinda Beach, will be open to all motor vehicle traffic until capacity is reached, or at 11:45 a.m., whichever comes first.
    Please expect delays and plan accordingly.


    November 27, 2019

    NASA to Broadcast Next Space Station Resupply Launch, Prelaunch Activities

    A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off from Space Launch Complex 40
    A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 6:01 p.m. EDT on July 25, 2019, carrying the Dragon spacecraft on the company's 18th Commercial Resupply Services (CRS-18) mission to the International Space Station. The uncrewed Dragon spacecraft will deliver about 5,000 pounds of science and research, crew supplies and vehicle hardware to the orbiting laboratory.
    Credits: NASA/Kim Shiflett

    NASA commercial cargo provider SpaceX is targeting 12:51 p.m. EST Wednesday, Dec. 4, for the launch of its 19th resupply mission to the International Space Station. Live coverage will begin on NASA Television and the agency's website with prelaunch events Tuesday, Dec. 3.

    The Dragon spacecraft will be filled with supplies and payloads including critical materials to directly support dozens of the more than 250 science and research investigations that will occur during Expeditions 61 and 62. In addition to bringing research to station, the Dragon's unpressurized trunk will transport the Japanese Space Agency's (JAXA) Hyperspectral Imager Suite (HISUI), a next-generation, hyperspectral Earth imaging system.

    About 10 minutes after launch, Dragon will reach its preliminary orbit. It will then deploy its solar arrays and begin a carefully choreographed series of thruster firings to reach the space station. When it arrives at the station Dec. 7, Dragon will be captured by Expedition 61 crewmembers and turned over to ground controllers for installation to Harmony's Earth-facing port.

    NASA TV Launch Coverage
    NASA TV live coverage will begin at 12:30 p.m. For NASA TV downlink information, schedules and links to streaming video, visit http://www.nasa.gov/ntv.

    On launch day, "mission audio," the launch conductor's countdown activities without NASA TV launch commentary, will be carried on 321-867-7135. Launch also will be available on local amateur VHF radio frequency 146.940 MHz heard within Brevard County on the Space Coast.

    NASA Web Prelaunch and Launch Coverage
    Prelaunch and launch day coverage of the SpaceX CRS-19 flight will be available on the NASA website. Coverage will include live streaming and blog updates beginning at 12:30 p.m. as the countdown milestones occur. On-demand streaming video and photos of the launch will be available shortly after liftoff. You can follow countdown coverage on our launch blog at http://blogs.nasa.gov/spacex.

    Learn more about the SpaceX CRS-19 mission by going to the mission home page at: http://www.nasa.gov/spacex


    November 26, 2019

    SpaceX In-Flight Abort Test for Commercial Crew

    The SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft in SpaceX's hangar at Launch Complex 39.
    The SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft that will be used for the company's in-flight abort test arrives Oct. 1, 2019, at SpaceX's hangar at Launch Complex 39 at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The test will demonstrate the spacecraft and launch system's ability to abort in the unlikely case of an emergency after liftoff. It's an important step before NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley are transported to the International Space Station aboard Crew Dragon as part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program.
    Credits: SpaceX

    SpaceX's In-Flight Abort Test is part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program. The flight test of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon spacecraft is targeted for no earlier than December -- an exact test date still is to be determined -- from historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

    This will be among the final major tests for the company before NASA astronauts will fly aboard the Crew Dragon spacecraft. As part of the test, SpaceX will configure the spacecraft to trigger a launch escape shortly after liftoff and demonstrate Crew Dragon's capability to safely separate from the rocket in the unlikely event of an in-flight emergency. The demonstration also will provide valuable data toward NASA certifying SpaceX's crew transportation system for carrying astronauts to and from the International Space Station.

    NASA's Commercial Crew Program is working with the American aerospace industry through a public-private partnership to launch astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil for the first time since 2011. The goal of the program is safe, reliable and cost-effective transportation to and from the International Space Station, which could allow for additional research time and increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity's testbed for exploration. The space station remains the springboard to NASA's next great leap in exploration, including future missions to the Moon and eventually to Mars.

    For test coverage, NASA's launch blog, and more information about the test, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew


    Dec. 17 — Atlas 5 – CST-100 Starliner Orbital Flight Test

    Launch time: 1247 GMT (7:47 a.m. EST)
    Launch site: SLC-41, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida
    A United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket, designated AV-080, will launch Boeing's first CST-100 Starliner spacecraft on an unpiloted Orbital Test Flight to the International Space Station. The capsule will dock with the space station, then return to Earth to landing in the Western United States after an orbital shakedown cruise ahead of a two-person Crew Test Flight. The rocket will fly in a vehicle configuration with two solid rocket boosters and a dual-engine Centaur upper stage.


    November 08, 2019

    NASA Invites Public Comment on Mars 2020 Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement

    NASA logo - the Meatball
    NASA will hold three public meetings to solicit comments on the draft Supplemental
    Environmental Impact Statement for the agency's Mars 2020 mission.
    Credits: NASA

    NASA has opened the public comment period for the draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) for the agency's Mars 2020 mission. The rover is targeted to launch from Florida in July 2020 on an expendable launch vehicle.

    NASA published the Notice of Availability for the Draft SEIS to the November 2014 Final Environmental Impact Statement for Mars 2020 on Oct. 25. The documents and associated information are available at:

    NASA will hold three public meetings to solicit comments on the draft SEIS:

    Wednesday, Nov. 13 — 6 to 9 p.m. EST at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex on Space Commerce Way in Merritt Island, Florida

    Thursday, Nov. 14 — 2 to 5 p.m. at the Florida Solar Energy Center at 1679 Clearlake Rd. in Cocoa, Florida

    Friday, Nov. 15 — 1 to 3 p.m. – virtual online public meeting at http://go.nasa.gov/SEIS-meeting.

    Advanced registration for these meetings is not required.

    The meetings will include briefings about the Mars 2020 mission, its power system, and the findings of the draft SEIS. Comments may be submitted in writing at a meeting, following the briefings, or by email to mars2020-nepa@lists.nasa.gov. The public comment period ends Dec. 10.

    The draft SEIS provides updated information related to the potential environmental impacts associated with carrying out the Mars 2020 mission. The mission includes a mobile science rover based on the design of NASA's Curiosity rover, which was launched in 2011 from Florida and is operating successfully on Mars.

    Additional information on NASA's National Environmental Policy Act process is available at: https://www.nasa.gov/emd/nepa


    November 04, 2019

    NASA's Kennedy Space Center Invited Media to Sierra Nevada Corporation Media Event

    Sierra Nevada Corporation Dream Chaser media event.
    A test model of the cargo logistics module for Sierra Nevada Corporation's Dream Chaser,
    the company's reusable spaceplane, is photographed in the Space Station Processing
    Facility (SSPF) at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
    Credits: Kim Shiflett

    Media were invited to a tour and briefing with Steve Lindsey, former NASA astronaut and space shuttle commander, Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) senior vice president of Space Exploration, about SNC's Dream Chaser spacecraft cargo module. The event took place on Tuesday, Nov. 19 at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

    Dream Chaser is currently in full production, readied for its missions to deliver cargo to the International Space Station under NASA's Commercial Resupply Services 2 contract.


    November 04, 2019

    Boeing's Starliner Completes Pad Abort Test for Commercial Crew

    Starliner Completes Pad Abort Test
    Boeing's CST-100 Starliner's four launch abort engines and several orbital maneuvering and attitude control
    thrusters ignite in the company's Pad Abort Test, pushing the spacecraft away from the test stand with a
    combined 160,000 pounds of thrust, from Launch Complex 32 on White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.
    Credits: NASA

    Boeing's CST-100 Starliner spacecraft completed a critical safety milestone on Monday in an end-to-end test of its abort system. The Pad Abort Test took place at Launch Complex 32 at the U.S. Army's White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.

    The test was designed to verify each of Starliner's systems will function not only separately, but in concert, to protect astronauts by carrying them safely away from the launch pad in the unlikely event of an emergency prior to liftoff. This was Boeing's first flight test with Starliner as part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program to return human spaceflight launches to the International Space Station from American soil.

    "Tests like this one are crucial to help us make sure the systems are as safe as possible," said Kathy Lueders, NASA's Commercial Crew Program manager. "We are thrilled with the preliminary results, and now we have the job of really digging into the data and analyzing whether everything worked as we expected."

    During the test, Starliner's four launch abort engines, and several orbital maneuvering and attitude control thrusters simultaneously ignited to rapidly push the spacecraft away from the test stand. Five seconds into flight, the abort engines shut off as planned, transferring steering to the control thrusters for the next five seconds.

    A pitcharound maneuver rotated the spacecraft into position for landing as it neared its peak altitude of approximately 4,500 feet. Two of three Starliner's main parachutes deployed just under half a minute into the test, and the service module separated from the crew module a few seconds later. Although designed with three parachutes, two opening successfully is acceptable for the test perimeters and crew safety. After one minute, the heat shield was released and airbags inflated, and the Starliner eased to the ground beneath its parachutes.

    The demonstration took only about 95 seconds from the moment the simulated abort was initiated until the Starliner crew module touched down on the desert ground.

    "Emergency scenario testing is very complex, and today our team validated that the spacecraft will keep our crew safe in the unlikely event of an abort," said John Mulholland, Vice President and Program Manager, Boeing's Commercial Crew Program. "Our teams across the program have made remarkable progress to get us to this point, and we are fully focused on the next challenge - Starliner's uncrewed flight to demonstrate Boeing's capability to safely fly crew to and from the space station."

    Boeing's next mission, called Orbital Flight Test, will launch an uncrewed Starliner spacecraft to the station on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station's Space Launch Complex 41. Launch is targeted for Dec. 17.

    Learn more about NASA's Commercial Crew Program at: http://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew


    November 01, 2019

    NASA TV to Air Boeing Starliner Pad Abort Test

    Boeing Starliner Pad Abort Test
    Boeing's CST-100 Starliner spacecraft and its service module sit atop the test stand
    at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico ahead of the company's Pad Abort Test.
    The test is scheduled for Nov. 4, 2019, and will demonstrate the spacecraft's ability
    to quickly escape the launch pad in the event of an emergency on launch day.
    Credits: Boeing

    NASA and Boeing will broadcast live coverage of the CST-100 Starliner Pad Abort Test on Monday, Nov. 4, from Launch Complex 32 at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.

    The test is scheduled for 9 a.m. EST (7 a.m. MST) with a three-hour test window. Live coverage is targeted to start at 8:50 a.m., on NASA Television and the agency's website. Coverage will be adjusted as necessary within the window.

    Boeing's Pad Abort Test is part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program work with the American aerospace industry -- through a public-private partnership -- to launch astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil for the first time since 2011. The goal of the program is to provide safe, reliable and cost-effective transportation to and from the International Space Station, which would allow for additional research time and increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity's testbed for exploration.

    The test is designed to verify that each of Starliner's systems will function not only separately, but in concert, to protect astronauts by carrying them safely away from the launch pad in the unlikely event of an emergency prior to liftoff. During the test, Starliner's four launch abort engines and several orbital maneuvering and altitude control thrusters will fire, pushing the spacecraft approximately 1 mile above land and 1 mile north of the test stand.

    The spacecraft's crew module will use parachutes with landing airbags to touch down at White Sands Missile Range. It will be recovered and brought back to Launch Complex 32 for evaluation and analysis.

    For additional coverage, NASA's launch blog, and more information about the mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew


    November 01, 2019

    Kennedy Space Center to be Recognized by Military Order of the Purple Heart

    KSCRecognized by Military Order of the Purple Heart

    On Nov.7, the spaceport Kennedy Space Center will receive the national honor of being named a Purple Heart Entity by the Military Order of the Purple Heart. The Military Order of the Purple Heart will present Kennedy Space Center with a proclamation and plaque honoring the multi-user spaceport. Kennedy is the first NASA center to receive this designation.

    Kennedy is being recognized as a Purple Heart Entity for the support of veterans though employment opportunities and services provided to veterans by the center's veterans employee resource group.

    Currently there are more than 300 veteran civil servants at Kennedy, supporting a variety of NASA's missions. This group includes Kennedy Space Center Director Bob Cabana, Deputy Director Janet Petro and Associate Director Kelvin Manning who will attend the event and provide remarks on behalf of the center.

    The Military Order of the Purple Heart is a congressionally chartered United States war veterans organization. The Purple Heart is one of the oldest and most recognized American military medals, awarded to service members who were killed or wounded by enemy action.


    October 24, 2019

    Boeing Orbital Flight Test Launch for Commercial Crew

    Boeing's CST-100 Starliner spacecraft atop a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket
    This illustration shows Boeing's CST-100 Starliner spacecraft atop a United Launch Alliance
    Atlas V rocket at Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS) in Florida.
    The spacecraft is being prepared for Boeing's Orbital Flight Test to the International Space Station
    Dec. 17, 2019, as part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program.
    Credits: Boeing

    Boeing's upcoming uncrewed Orbital Flight Test (OFT) to the International Space Station, is part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program.

    The launch of Boeing's Starliner spacecraft on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket is targeted for Dec. 17 from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS) in Florida.

    The flight test will provide valuable data on the end-to-end performance of the Atlas V rocket, Starliner spacecraft, and ground systems, as well as in-orbit, docking, and landing operations. The data will be used as part of NASA's process of certifying Boeing's crew transportation system for carrying astronauts to and from the space station.

    NASA's Commercial Crew Program is working with the American aerospace industry through a public-private partnership to launch astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil for the first time since 2011. The goal of the program is safe, reliable and cost-effective human space transportation to and from the International Space Station and low-Earth orbit, which could allow for additional research time and increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity's testbed for exploration.

    For launch countdown coverage, NASA's launch blog, and more information about the mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew


    October 22, 2019

    Next SpaceX Space Station Cargo Launch

    SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off from Space Launch Complex 40
    A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral
    Air Force Station in Florida at 6:01 p.m. EDT on July 25, 2019, carrying the Dragon
    spacecraft on the company's 18th Commercial Resupply Services mission to
    the International Space Station.
    Credits: NASA/Tony Gray & Kenny Allen

    A SpaceX Dragon cargo spacecraft is scheduled to launch on a Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS) in Florida no earlier than Wednesday, Dec. 4 at 12:48 p.m. EST with delivery of science investigations, supplies, and equipment to the International Space Station..

    Each resupply mission to the station delivers scientific investigations in the areas of biology and biotechnology, physical sciences, Earth and space science. Advances in these areas will help to keep astronauts healthy during long-duration space travel and demonstrate technologies for future human and robotic exploration beyond low-Earth orbit to the Moon and Mars. Space station research through the ISS National Lab also provides opportunities for other U.S. government agencies, private industry, and academic and research institutions, to conduct microgravity research that leads to new technologies, medical treatments, and products that improve life on Earth.

    Highlights of space station research that will be facilitated by research aboard this SpaceX Dragon mission include testing the effectiveness of a device to separate and capture water droplets suspended in an air stream, delivering a next-generation spaceborne system to image Earth in higher spectral resolution than currently possible onboard the TERRA satellite, and testing conditions to develop an inexpensive and scalable process to manufacture optical materials in space.

    Cargo resupply from U.S. companies ensures a national capability to deliver critical science research to the space station, significantly increasing NASA's ability to conduct new investigations at the only laboratory in space. This is the 19th SpaceX mission under NASA's Commercial Resupply Services contract.

    The International Space Station is a convergence of science, technology and human innovation that demonstrates new technologies and enables research not possible on Earth. The space station has been occupied continuously since November 2000. In that time, 239 people and a variety of international and commercial spacecraft have visited the orbiting laboratory. The space station remains the springboard to NASA's next great leap in exploration, including future missions to the Moon and eventually to Mars.

    For launch countdown coverage, NASA's launch blog, and more information about the mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/spacex


    October 21, 2019

    NASA: Boeing Starliner Transport to Launch Site

    Boeing's CST-100 Starliner spacecraft
    The crew module of Boeing's CST-100 Starliner spacecraft is lifted onto its service module
    on Oct. 16 inside the Commercial Crew and Cargo Processing Facility (C3PF) at Kennedy Space Center
    in Florida ahead of the company's Orbital Flight Test to the International Space Station as part of
    NASA's Commercial Crew Program.
    Credits: Boeing

    In mid-November the next milestone in NASA's Commercial Crew Program takes place, as Boeing's CST-100 Starliner is transported for integration on a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket.

    The spacecraft will be moved from its production facility to its launch site in Florida ahead of the company's uncrewed Orbital Flight Test to the International Space Station.

    During the event, the fueled Starliner will be moved from Boeing's Commercial Crew and Cargo Processing Facility at Kennedy to ULA's Space Launch Complex 41 Vertical Integration Facility on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. Later the same day, the spacecraft will be stacked on top an Atlas V rocket for final processing ahead of the launch.

    Boeing's uncrewed flight test will provide valuable data on the end-to-end performance of the rocket, spacecraft, and ground systems, as well as in-orbit, docking and landing operations. The data will be used toward certification of Boeing's crew transportation system for carrying astronauts to and from the space station.

    NASA's Commercial Crew Program is working with the American aerospace industry through public-private partnerships to launch astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil for the first time since 2011. The goal of the program is safe, reliable and cost-effective human space transportation to and from the International Space Station, which could allow for additional research time aboard the station and increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity's testbed for exploration.

    For launch coverage, NASA's launch blog, and more information about the mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew


    October 11, 2019

    NASA Spacecraft Launches on Mission to Explore Frontier of Space

    Launching NASA's Ionospheric Connection Explorer (ICON) spacecraft
    Northrop Grumman's L-1011 aircraft, Stargazer, prepares for takeoff at the
    Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Skid Strip in Florida on Oct. 10, 2019.
    Attached beneath the aircraft is the company's Pegasus XL rocket, carrying
    NASA's Ionospheric Connection Explorer (ICON).
    Credits: NASA

    After successfully launching Thursday night, NASA's Ionospheric Connection Explorer (ICON) spacecraft is in orbit for a first-of-its-kind mission to study a region of space where changes can disrupt communications and satellite orbits, and even increase radiation risks to astronauts.

    A Northrop Grumman Stargazer L-1011 aircraft took off at 8:31 p.m. EDT from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida carrying ICON, on a Northrop Grumman Pegasus XL rocket, to launch altitude of about 39,000 feet. The first launch opportunity around 9:30 was skipped due to communication issues between the ground team at Cape Canaveral and the aircraft. On the second attempt, the aircraft crew released its payload at 9:59 p.m. EDT and automated systems on the Pegasus rocket launched ICON, a spacecraft roughly the size of a refrigerator, into space.

    The spacecraft's solar panels successfully deployed, indicating it has power with all systems operating. After an approximately month-long commissioning period, ICON will begin sending back its first science data in November.

    ICON will study changes in a region of the upper atmosphere called the ionosphere. In addition to interfering with communications signals, space weather in the ionosphere can also prematurely decay spacecraft orbits and expose astronauts to radiation-borne health risks. Historically, this critical region of near-Earth space has been difficult to observe. Spacecraft can't travel through the low parts of the ionosphere and balloons can't travel high enough.

    "ICON has an important job to do – to help us understand the dynamic space environment near our home," said Nicola Fox, director for heliophysics at NASA Headquarters in Washington. "ICON will be the first mission to simultaneously track what's happening in Earth's upper atmosphere and in space to see how the two interact, causing the kind of changes that can disrupt our communications systems."

    ICON explores the connections between the neutral atmosphere and the electrically charged ionosphere with four instruments. Three of the instruments rely on one of the upper atmosphere's more spectacular phenomena: colorful bands called airglow.

    Airglow is created by a similar process that creates the aurora – gas is excited by radiation from the Sun and emits light. Though aurora are typically confined to extreme northern and southern latitudes, airglow happens constantly across the globe, and is much fainter. But it's still bright enough for ICON's instruments to build up a picture of the ionosphere's density, composition and structure. By way of airglow, ICON can observe how particles throughout the upper atmosphere are moving.

    ICON's fourth instrument provides direct measurements of the ionosphere around it. This instrument characterizes the charged gases immediately surrounding the spacecraft.

    "We put as much capability on this satellite that could possibly fit on the payload deck," said Thomas Immel, the principal investigator for ICON at the University of California, Berkeley. "All those instruments are focused on the ionosphere in a completely new science mission that starts now."

    ICON's orbit around Earth places it at a 27-degree inclination and altitude of about 360 miles. From there, it can observe the ionosphere around the equator. ICON will aim its instruments for a view of what's happening at the lowest boundary of space, from about 55 miles up to 360 miles above the surface. This rapid orbit circles Earth in 97 minutes while precessing around the equator, allowing ICON to sample a wide range of latitude, longitude and local times.

    ICON is an Explorer-class mission. NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, manages the Explorer Program for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. The University of California at Berkeley developed the ICON mission and the two ultraviolet imaging spectrographs, Extreme Ultra-Violet instrument and the Far Ultra-Violet instrument. The Naval Research Laboratory in Washington developed the Michelson Interferometer for Global High-resolution Thermospheric Imaging instrument. The University of Texas in Dallas developed the Ion Velocity Meter. The spacecraft was built by Northrop Grumman in Dulles, Virginia. The Mission Operations Center at UC Berkeley's Space Sciences Laboratory is tasked with operating the ICON mission.

    For more information on ICON, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/icon


    October 10, 2019

    Space Launch System's Core Stage Pathfinder Practice at Kennedy

    The core stage pathfinder of the Space Launch System rocket inside the Vehicle Assembly Building.
    The core stage pathfinder of the Space Launch System rocket inside the Vehicle Assembly Building.
    Credits: NASA/Kim Shiflett

    Viewing the movement of the core stage pathfinder of the Space Launch System rocket inside the Vehicle Assembly Building. Crews will lift the 212-foot-long pathfinder nearly 200 feet into the air to practice moving it from the transfer aisle into High Bay 3.

    The practice going on all this month is part of preparations for the Artemis missions to the Moon.

    All media accreditation requests must be submitted online at: https://media.ksc.nasa.gov

    Learn more about NASA's Artemis I mission at: https://www.nasa.gov/artemis-1


    October 04, 2019

    Space Launch System's Sound Suppression System Final Test at Kennedy

    Wetflow test at KSC Launch Pad 39B.
    A wet flow test at Launch Pad 39B on September 13, 2019, tests the sound suppression system
    that will be used for launch of NASA's Space Launch System for the Artemis I mission.
    Credits: NASA/Kim Shiflett

    NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida to conduct the final water flow test in a series of sound suppression tests at Launch Pad 39B in preparation for the first Artemis launch. The brief test is one of the final checkouts between the launch pad and the mobile launcher.

    At launch, the Space Launch System rocket will produce nearly nine million pounds of thrust—and a lot of sound. The purpose of the sound suppression system is to dampen sound and vibrations to keep the rocket and the launch pad safe at lift-off. During the test and the launch of Artemis missions, 450,000 gallons of water will be released onto the mobile launcher and flame deflector.

    Learn more about NASA's Artemis I mission at: https://www.nasa.gov/artemis-1


    October 01, 2019

    NASA to Broadcast Launch of Mission to Study the Frontier of Space

    NASA's Ionospheric Connection Explorer (ICON)
    NASA's Ionospheric Connection Explorer (ICON) is attached to the Northrop Grumman
    Pegasus XL rocket inside Building 1555 at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California
    on Sept. 10, 2019.           Credits: NASA/Randy Beaudoin

    NASA's Ionospheric Connection Explorer (ICON) is scheduled to be air-launched over the Atlantic Ocean at 9:30 p.m. EDT Wednesday, Oct. 9, by Northrop Grumman's Pegasus XL rocket. Coverage of the prelaunch briefing and launch will air live on NASA Television and the agency's website.

    ICON and Pegasus will take off aboard the company's L-1011 Stargazer aircraft from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida for a 90-minute launch window opening at 9:25 p.m.

    ICON will study the frontier of space - the dynamic zone high in our atmosphere where terrestrial weather from below meets space weather above. The ionosphere can be a source of great beauty, but also can be disruptive to radio communications and satellites, and astronaut health. ICON will help determine the physical processes at play in the ionosphere and pave the way for mitigating its effects on our technology, communications systems and society.

    For the latest schedule of prelaunch briefings, events and NASA TV coverage, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/feature/icon-briefings-and-events

    Learn more about the ICON mission at: https://blogs.nasa.gov/icon/


    September 27, 2019

    NASA Awards Two Contracts for Supply of Gaseous, Liquid Helium

    NASA has awarded contracts to Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. of Allentown, Pennsylvania, and Messer LLC of Bridgewater, New Jersey, to supply gaseous and liquid helium.

    Each contract is a fixed-price, indefinite-delivery requirement contract that begins Oct. 1 with a two-year base period, followed by three one-year options that, if exercised, extend the contract to Sept. 30, 2024. The total value of the contract with Air Products, including options, is approximately $168 million. The total value of the contract with Messer, including options, is approximately $35.2 million.

    NASA uses helium as an inert purge gas for hydrogen systems and a pressurizing agent for ground and flight fluid systems. Helium is also used throughout the agency as a cryogenic agent for cooling various materials and has been used in precision welding applications. Helium is required to support the Space Launch System, Orion spacecraft, Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA), International Space Station, and various other programs.

    For more information about NASA and agency programs, visit: https://www.nasa.gov


    September 20, 2019

    Space Launch System Hardware to Arrive on Pegasus Barge at Kennedy

    SLS on Pegasus barge.
    Tugboats tow the Pegasus Barge away from the dock in the Turn Basin
    in Kennedy Space Center's Launch Complex 39 area.
    Credits: NASA/Jim Grossmann

    The SLS core stage pathfinder is a full-scale mockup that is identical to the core stage in shape, size and weight. The pathfinder, though not actual flight hardware, will provide the EGS team with the opportunity to practice stacking maneuvers and certify the new system inside the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) High Bay 3 before Artemis flight hardware arrives next year. Over the next several months, pathfinder will be used to validate ground support equipment and demonstrate how the core stage will be integrated in the VAB – the same process the actual core stage will undergo when being processed for Artemis I.

    Learn more about NASA's Artemis I mission at: https://www.nasa.gov/artemis-1


    September 16, 2019

    NASA Opens Accreditation for Launch of Mission to Explore Ionosphere

    NASA explores the Ionosphere
    NASA's Ionospheric Connection Explorer will study the frontier of space: the dynamic zone high
    in our atmosphere where terrestrial weather from below meets space weather above.
    Credits: NASA

    NASA's launch of its Ionospheric Connection Explorer (ICON [1]) mission, targeted to be air-launched over the Atlantic Ocean on a Northrop Grumman Pegasus XL rocket Wednesday, Oct. 9.

    ICON and Pegasus will take off aboard the L-1011 Stargazer aircraft from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station for a 90-minute launch window opening at 9:25 p.m. ICON will be launching off the coast of Daytona at 39,000 feet at a heading of 105 degrees.

    The ionosphere, where Earth's weather meets space weather, can be a source of great beauty, but also can be disruptive to radio communications and satellites, and astronaut health. ICON will help determine the physical processes at play in this frontier of space, and help find ways to mitigate their negative effects.

    For more information about the ICON mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/icon


    August 23, 2019

    NASA Awards CubeSat Dispenser Hardware, Mission Integration Services 3 Contract

    NASA's Launch Services Program (LSP) at the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Florida has selected five companies to provide commercial CubeSat dispenser hardware and mission integration services.

    The five companies are:

    • Maverick Space Systems, Inc. of San Luis Obispo, California
    • NanoRacks, LLC of Webster, Texas
    • TriSept Corporation of Chantilly, Virginia
    • Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems, Inc. of Irvine, California
    • Xtenti, LLC of Dallas, Texas

    The CubeSat 3 contract provides indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, firm-fixed-price task orders, with a five-year ordering period that begins Aug. 23. The maximum cumulative value of the contracts is $18 million.

    The contractors will provide various-sized CubeSat dispensers and dispenser mass simulators. These dispensers will be loaded with CubeSats, mounted to a launch vehicle, and release CubeSats at a designated time after launch.

    The contractors also will provide mission integration services, to include flight hardware qualification, flight hardware development and assembly, flight hardware acceptance testing, dispenser to launch vehicle interface control document (ICD) development, CubeSat to dispenser ICD development, integration of CubeSats into flight dispensers, integrated flight CubeSat/dispenser acceptance testing, flight hardware to launch vehicle integration, and mission support.

    LSP supports the CubeSat Launch Initiative by providing dispenser hardware and mission integration services to CubeSat development teams from educational institutions, non-profit organizations, and NASA centers.

    For more information about NASA and other agency programs, visit: https://www.nasa.gov


    August 23, 2019

    NASA Asks American Companies to Deliver Supplies for Artemis Moon Missions

    Moon & beyond gateway support concept.
    An illustration of the Gateway - what will serve as home base for
    human and robotic missions to the Moon and, ultimately, Mars.
    Credits: NASA

    In another major step toward landing American astronauts on the lunar surface by 2024, NASA is asking industry to respond to a Request for Proposals to deliver cargo, science experiments and supplies to the Gateway to support Artemis missions to the lunar surface. Commercial supply services will support the agency's Artemis lunar exploration program which includes sending the first woman and the next man to surface of the Moon within five years, and preparing for human exploration of Mars.

    The agency is seeking capabilities from American companies to deliver a logistics spacecraft with pressurized and unpressurized cargo to the Gateway for six months of docked operations followed by automatic disposal. The logistics spacecraft must launch on a commercial rocket.

    "Working with industry to deliver supplies necessary to support our lunar missions is a critical step to accelerate our return to the Moon under the Artemis program including meeting that bold goal to land the next American astronauts on the Moon by 2024," said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. "This solicitation builds on the capabilities NASA pioneered in low-Earth orbit with commercial cargo resupply to the International Space Station and is the next step in commercialization of deep space. We look forward to industry's response to our latest solicitation."

    The agency previously asked industry for innovative ideas to transport supplies between Earth and the Gateway, which will be located about 250,000 miles away in a lunar orbit. NASA followed up that request with a draft solicitation earlier this summer.

    "We chose to minimize spacecraft requirements on industry to allow for commercial innovation, but we are asking industry to propose their best solutions for delivering cargo and enabling our deep space supply chain," said Mark Wiese, NASA's Gateway logistics element manager at Kennedy Space Center in Florida. "In addition to delivering cargo, science and other supplies with these services, private industry also has the opportunity to deliver other elements of our lunar architecture with this solicitation."

    This solicitation is for a multi-award, firm-fixed price, indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contract for 15 years, with a maximum $7 billion value. The guaranteed minimum value for any award is two missions.

    NASA is also asking responders to address logistics spacecraft design, cargo mass capability, pressurized volume, power availability for payloads and, transit time to Gateway.

    Following initial award, there may be future contract opportunities for new service providers to ensure capabilities remain competitive. If approved in advance by NASA, a commercial provider may also use a mission to deliver, remove and/or return non-NASA cargo as long as it does not interfere with the agency mission, furthering the development of a robust deep space economy.

    This solicitation is the latest in a line of work by the agency to accelerate its Moon to Mars exploration plans by working with American aerospace companies. NASA recently awarded a contract to Maxar Technologies to design, develop, launch and demonstrate the power and propulsion element by 2022. Negotiations are ongoing for development of the habitation and logistics outpost [8] (HALO) module. The agency is also working on another draft solicitation for the integrated human landing system. A final solicitation will be released in the future.

    Charged with returning to the Moon within five years, NASA's lunar exploration plan encompasses a two-phase approach: speed – landing on the Moon by 2024 – and establishing a sustained multi-national human presence on and around the Moon by 2028. The agency will leverage what it learns on the Moon to prepare for the next giant leap – sending astronauts to Mars.

    For more information about NASA's Moon to Mars exploration plans, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/moontomars


    August 13, 2019

    NASA Awards Contract for Exploration Ground Systems Program Services

    NASA has selected ARES Technical Services Corporation in Burlingame, California, to provide support services to the Exploration Ground Systems (EGS) Program at the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

    The cost-plus fixed-fee, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract begins Oct. 1 with a one-year base period, followed by a two-year option and four one-year options that, if exercised, will extend to Sept. 30, 2026. The total contract value including options is approximately $115.3 million.

    Under the contract, ARES will provide engineering and technical services, program and business management support services and administrative support services to the EGS Program. The contract also includes support for ground systems and spaceflight systems planning and design; project management and integration; operations integration and analysis; technical requirements development, management, and compliance; cost, risk, information and configuration management; and schedule integration and analysis.

    For more information about NASA and agency programs, visit: https://www.nasa.gov


    August 01, 2019

    NASA and Northrop Grumman Sign Agreement for Use of Shuttle-era Facilities

    NASA and Northrop Grumman Sign Agreement for Use of Shuttle-era Facilities
    On Friday, Aug. 16, media is invited to the notification ceremony of Kennedy's partnership
    agreements with Northrop Grumman Corporation.
    Credits: NASA/Kim Shiflett

    Media are invited to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Friday, Aug. 16, for the notification ceremony of Kennedy's partnership agreements with Northrop Grumman Corporation.

    The event will highlight a Reimbursable Space Act Agreement for the use of NASA's Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB), High Bay 2 and Mobile Launcher Platform 3 (MLP-3) and an Enhanced Use Lease (EUL) for land in support of Northrop Grumman's modification of MLP-3. These facilities and assets were used during the Space Shuttle Program and are now available to commercial partners as part of the agency's plan in support of a multi-user spaceport. Northrop Grumman personnel will be available to discuss this new partnership.

    Pursuant to a Launch Services Agreement with the U.S. Air Force, Northrop Grumman is developing a new launch vehicle, OmegA. The company plans to assemble, test and launch OmegA at Kennedy and will use VAB High Bay 2 for assembly and testing, and modify MLP-3 for use as an assembly and launch platform. These two agreements, along with future agreements for use of NASA KSC services and property, including Launch Complex 39B, will enable Northrop Grumman's OmegA launch capability from Kennedy.

    Northrop Grumman is a leading global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in autonomous systems, cyber, C4ISR, space, strike, and logistics and modernization to customers worldwide. Please visit news.northropgrumman.com and follow on Twitter, @NGCNews, for more information.


    July 31, 2019

    Kennedy Partners with US Industry to Advance Moon, Mars Technology

    Moon human landing system illustration
    Illustration of a human landing system and crew on the lunar surface with Earth near the horizon.
    Credits: NASA

    As NASA prepares to land humans on the Moon by 2024 with the Artemis program, commercial companies are developing new technologies, working toward space ventures of their own and looking to NASA for assistance. NASA has selected 13 U.S. companies for 19 partnerships to mature industry-developed space technologies and help maintain American leadership in space. NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida is working with two of them. The public-private partnerships will advance the commercial space sector and help bring new capabilities to market that could benefit future NASA missions.

    Kennedy's Swamp Works will partner with SpaceX to advance their technology to vertically land large rockets on the Moon. This includes advancing models to assess engine plume interaction with lunar regolith.

    "We are dedicated to developing technologies that will take us forward to the Moon and to Mars, and working with commercial partners such as SpaceX will make these missions possible," said Rob Mueller, senior technologist for advanced projects development in Kennedy's Exploration Research and Technology Programs. "Missions to the lunar surface present challenges from rocket engine plume effects as they interact with the regolith surface to eject high-velocity dust particles and rocks. To mitigate risk of damage to equipment during landings and takeoff, we'll work on technologies such as launch and landing pads, and blast protection berms or walls to make operations on the Moon sustainable and safe for NASA and all of our partners. These types of risk mitigations become exponentially more important as landers increase in size, and Kennedy's Swamp Works is at the forefront of developing new technological solutions for this based on related computer modeling tools and testing."

    The spaceport's botanists will work with Lockheed Martin to test technologies and operations for autonomous in-space plant growth systems. Integrating robotics with plant systems could help NASA harvest plants on future platforms in deep space.

    "My office has many examples of NASA engineers, scientists, interns and support contractors working with industry, such as earlier this year when we supported Lockheed Martin with Gateway evaluation testing," said Bryan Onate, chief of the Life Sciences and Utilization Office at Kennedy. "Exploring beyond low-Earth orbit will require long-duration stays on the Moon and eventually Mars, meaning we are focused on providing plant growth systems that will supplement and sustain the crews' nutrition and implement autonomous operations as required. So, we are excited to be taking part in this collaborative opportunity, which will develop new technology to enable future missions."

    The selections were made through NASA's Announcement of Collaboration Opportunity (ACO) released in October 2018 by the Space Technology Mission Directorate. They will result in non-reimbursable Space Act Agreements between the companies and NASA. Through ACO, NASA helps reduce the development cost of technologies and accelerate the infusion of emerging commercial capabilities into space missions.

    For more information about the full ACO selection, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/press-release/nasa-announces-us-industry-partnerships-to-advance-moon-mars-technology.


    August 1: Launch delayed for a valve replacement. Expected on August 5th, 6:52-8:20pm.

    July 31, 2019

    Kennedy Space Center Traffic and Road Closures for Upcoming Launch Activities

    Expect heavy traffic on and around Kennedy Space Center on Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019, due to the upcoming launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The launch window is from 6:50 to 8:25 p.m. EDT.

    PUBLIC ACCESS ROAD CLOSURES

    Starting Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019, Kennedy Space Center Security Police will be enforcing restricted access from the Kennedy Space Center boundary lines for the duration of the SpaceX launch attempt.

    • State Road 3 from the Gate 2 News Media Pass and Identification Building to State Road 405 (NASA Causeway), including Space Commerce Way, will be closed to the general public at 3 p.m. Access to Kennedy Space Center, the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Exploration Park and Blue Origin will be limited to authorized personnel. The roads will reopen after launch.
    • NASA Causeway between US 1 and Gate 3 also will be restricted to authorized personnel (badged employees and their partners). The roads will reopen after launch.
    • The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will be open; however, once capacity has been reached, no further traffic will be permitted.
    • The A. Max Brewer Bridge on State Road 406 in Titusville, east to Playalinda Beach, will be open to all motor vehicle traffic until capacity is reached, or at 5:50 p.m., whichever comes first.
    • State Road 3 North at US 1 in Volusia County, south to Playalinda Beach, will be open to all motor vehicle traffic until capacity is reached, or at 5:50 p.m., whichever comes first.
    Please expect delays and plan accordingly.


    July 25, 2019

    SpaceX Dragon on Route to Space Station with NASA Science, Cargo

    SpaceX's Falxon & Dragon on way to the ISS.
    A SpaceX Dragon cargo spacecraft launches to the International Space Station on a Falcon 9 rocket at 6:01 p.m. EDT July 25, 2019, from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. The spacecraft is scheduled to arrive at the orbiting laboratory July 27 with the station's second commercial crew docking port and about 5,000 pounds of science investigations and supplies.
    Credits: NASA

    A SpaceX Dragon cargo spacecraft is on its way to deliver the second commercial crew docking port and about 5,000 pounds of science investigations and supplies for the International Space Station after a 6:01 p.m. EDT Thursday launch from Florida.

    The spacecraft launched on a Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, and is scheduled to arrive at the orbiting laboratory Saturday, July 27. Coverage of the spacecraft's approach and arrival will begin at 8:30 a.m. on NASA Television and the agency's website.

    Dragon will join three other spacecraft currently at the space station. Expedition 60 Flight Engineers Nick Hague and Christina Koch of NASA will use the station's robotic arm, Canadarm2, to grab, or grapple, Dragon around 10 a.m. Coverage of robotic installation to the Earth-facing port of the Harmony module will begin at 12 p.m.

    A key item in Dragon's unpressurized cargo section is International Docking Adapter-3 (IDA-3). Flight controllers at mission control in Houston will use the robotic arm to extract IDA-3 from Dragon and position it over Pressurized Mating Adapter-3, on the space-facing side of the Harmony module. Hague and NASA astronaut Drew Morgan, who arrived at the station Saturday, July 20, will conduct a spacewalk in mid-August to install the docking port, connect power and data cables, and set up a high-definition camera on a boom arm.

    Robotics flight control teams from NASA and the Canadian Space Agency will move the docking port into position remotely before the astronauts perform the final installation steps. IDA-3 and IDA-2, which was installed in the summer of 2016, provide a new standardized and automated docking system for future spacecraft, including upcoming commercial spacecraft that will transport astronauts through contracts with NASA.

    This delivery, SpaceX's 18th cargo flight to the space station under a Commercial Resupply Services contract with NASA, will support dozens of new and existing investigations. The space station continues to be a one-of-a-kind laboratory where NASA is conducting world-class research in fields, such as biology, physics, and materials science. NASA's research and development work aboard the space station contributes to the agency's deep space exploration plans, including returning astronauts to the Moon's surface in five years and preparing to send humans to Mars.

    Here are details about some of the scientific investigations Dragon is delivering to the space station:

    Bio-Mining in Microgravity The Biorock investigation will provide insight into the physical interactions of liquid, rocks and microorganisms under microgravity conditions and improve the efficiency and understanding of mining materials in space. Bio-mining eventually could help explorers on the Moon or Mars acquire needed materials, lessening the need to use precious resources from Earth and reducing the amount of supplies that explorers must take with them.

    Printing Biological Tissues in Space Using 3D biological printers to produce usable human organs has long been a dream of scientists and doctors around the globe. However, printing the tiny, complex structures found inside human organs, such as capillary structures, has proven difficult to accomplish in Earth's gravity. To overcome this challenge, Techshot designed their BioFabrication Facility to print organ-like tissues in microgravity – a stepping stone in a long-term plan to manufacture whole human organs in space using refined biological 3D printing techniques.

    Improving Tire Manufacturing from Orbit The Goodyear Tire investigation will use microgravity to push the limits of silica fillers for tire applications. A better understanding of silica morphology and the relationship between silica structure and its properties could improve the silica design process, silica rubber formulation and tire manufacturing and performance. Such improvements could include increased fuel efficiency, which would reduce transportation costs and help to protect Earth's environment.

    Effects of Microgravity on Microglia 3D Models Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) – adult cells genetically programmed to return to an embryonic stem cell-like state – have the ability to develop into any cell type in the human body, potentially providing an unlimited source of human cells for therapeutic purposes. Space Tango-Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells examines how specialized white blood cells derived from iPSCs of patients with Parkinson's disease and multiple sclerosis grow and move in 3D cultures, and any changes in gene expression that occur as a result of exposure to a microgravity environment. Results could lead to the development of potential therapies.

    Mechanisms of Moss in Microgravity Space Moss compares mosses grown aboard the space station with those grown on Earth to determine how microgravity affects its growth, development, and other characteristics. Tiny plants without roots, mosses need only a small area for growth, an advantage for their potential use in space and future bases on the Moon or Mars. This investigation also could yield information that aids in engineering other plants to grow better on the Moon and Mars, as well as on Earth.

    These are just a few of the hundreds of investigations providing opportunities for U.S. government agencies, private industry, and academic and research institutions to conduct microgravity research that leads to new technologies, medical treatments, and products that improve life on Earth. Conducting science aboard the orbiting laboratory will help us learn how to keep astronauts healthy during long-duration space travel and demonstrate technologies for future human and robotic exploration beyond low-Earth orbit to the Moon and Mars.

    For more than 18 years, humans have lived and worked continuously aboard the International Space Station, advancing scientific knowledge and demonstrating new technologies, making research breakthroughs not possible on Earth that will enable long-duration human and robotic exploration into deep space. A global endeavor, more than 230 people from 18 countries have visited the unique microgravity laboratory that has hosted more than 2,500 research investigations from researchers in 106 countries.

    Get breaking news, images and features from the station on social media, at:
    https://instagram.com/iss
    https://www.twitter.com/ISS_Research
    https://www.twitter.com/Space_Station


    July 19, 2019

    NASA Coverage of Vice President's Visit to Kennedy Space Center on Moon Landing Anniversary

    Vice President Mike Pence
    Vice President Mike Pence addresses NASA employees in front of a mockup of Boeing's Starliner capsule July 6, 2017, at the Vehicle Assembly Building at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
    Credits: NASA/Aubrey Gemignani

    NASA will provide television, still image, and social media coverage of Vice President Mike Pence's visit to the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Saturday, July 20 – the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing.

    The day will begin at 11:25 a.m. EDT with Air Force Two's arrival at Kennedy's Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF) runway.

    NASA Television and the agency's website will air live coverage of the Vice President's special address in Kennedy's historic Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout facility at 1:05 p.m.

    During his visit, the Vice President will recognize the success of Apollo 11 – one of humanity's greatest achievements – and address progress in NASA's return to the Moon with the upcoming Artemis missions. Going back to the Moon sustainably with this innovative approach will enable America to take the next giant leap – sending humans to Mars.

    Coverage on NASA's social media accounts will include Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat.


    July 15, 2019

    NASA's Next Space Station Resupply Launch, Prelaunch Activities

    Typical SpaceX Falcon 9 & Dragon launch.
    A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon cargo craft launches from Space Launch Complex 40 on
    Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 2:48 a.m. EDT May 4, 2019 on the company's
    17th Commercial Resupply Services mission for NASA to the International Space Station.
    Credits: NASA/Tony Gray and Kenny Allen

    NASA commercial cargo provider SpaceX is targeting 7:35 p.m. EDT Sunday, July 21, for the launch of its 18th agency-contracted resupply mission to the International Space Station. Live coverage will begin on NASA Television and the agency's website Sunday with prelaunch events.

    The Dragon spacecraft will deliver supplies and critical materials to directly support dozens of the more than 250 science and research investigations that will occur during Expeditions 60 and beyond. In addition to bringing research to station, the Dragon's unpressurized trunk is carrying the International Docking Adapter-3 (IDA-3), which, when installed on the space station, will provide the microgravity laboratory with two common ports enabling expanded opportunities for visiting vehicles, including new spacecraft designed to carry humans for NASA's Commercial Crew Program.

    Dragon will dock to the space station Tuesday, July 23. When it arrives, NASA astronaut Nick Hague will grapple Dragon with NASA astronaut Christina Koch acting as a backup. NASA's Andrew Morgan will assist the duo by monitoring telemetry during Dragon's approach. The station crew will monitor Dragon vehicle functions during rendezvous. After Dragon capture, mission control in Houston will send ground commands for the station's arm to rotate and install it on the bottom of the station's Harmony module.

    Dragon will remain at the space station until Aug. 20, when the spacecraft will return to Earth with research and return cargo.

    For the latest schedule of prelaunch briefings, events and NASA TV coverage, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/press-release/nasa-to-broadcast-next-space-station-resupply-launch-prelaunch-activities-1
    Learn more about the SpaceX resupply mission at: https://www.nasa.gov/spacex


    July 08, 2019

    CONTRACT RELEASE C19-018

    NASA Awards Launch Services Contract for Groundbreaking Astrophysics Mission

    NASA has selected SpaceX of Hawthorne, California, to provide launch services for the agency's Imaging X-Ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE) mission, which will allow astronomers to discover, for the first time, the hidden details of some of the most exotic astronomical objects in our universe.

    The total cost for NASA to launch IXPE is approximately $50.3 million, which includes the launch service and other mission-related costs.

    IXPE measures polarized X-rays from objects, such as black holes and neutron stars to better understand these types of cosmic phenomena and extreme environments.

    The IXPE mission currently is targeted to launch in April 2021 on a Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Complex 39A in Florida. IXPE will fly three space telescopes with sensitive detectors capable of measuring the polarization of cosmic X-rays, allowing scientists to answer fundamental questions about these turbulent environments where gravitational, electric and magnetic fields are at their limits.

    NASA's Launch Services Program at Kennedy Space Center in Florida will manage the SpaceX launch service. The IXPE project office is located at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama and is managed by the Explorers Program Office at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington.

    For more information about NASA programs and missions, visit: http://www.nasa.gov


    June 25, 2019

    Coverage Set for NASA Test of Orion Abort System for Moon to Mars Missions

    A test version of the Orion crew module for Ascent Abort-2, with its launch abort system attached, is hoisted by crane at Space Launch Complex 46 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida in May. AA-2 is a critical safety test that helps pave the way for Artemis missions to the Moon and then Mars.
    NASA Orion's Ascent Abort-2 Flight Test
    In a test targeted for June 2019 known as Ascent Abort-2, NASA will verify the Orion spacecraft's launch abort system.
    Credit: NASA

    NASA Television will broadcast launch and prelaunch activities of the Ascent Abort-2 flight test of the Orion spacecraft's launch abort system that will help pave the way for Artemis missions with astronauts to the Moon and then Mars.

    The test's four-hour launch window opens at 7 a.m. EDT Tuesday, July 2. A test version of the crew module will launch from Space Launch Complex 46 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. NASA TV coverage will begin at 6:40 a.m.

    Ascent Abort-2 will verify Orion's abort system can pull the crew module away from an emergency during its ascent to space. During approximately three minutes of flight, a booster will loft the test capsule about six miles into the atmosphere to experience high-stress aerodynamic conditions, at which point the abort sequence will be triggered to carry the crew module a safe distance from the rocket. The test flight will help ensure the safety of astronauts, in the unlikely event an emergency arises as they rocket into space.

    Orion is part of NASA's backbone for deep space exploration that will land the first woman and next man on the Moon by 2024, along with the Space Launch System and the Gateway. Through the Artemis program, the next American Moon walkers will depart Earth aboard Orion and begin a new era of exploration. DETAILS ON NASA WEBSITE.


    June 20, 2019

    SpaceX and DoD Targeting June 24 for Falcon Heavy Launch

    NASA Television coverage is scheduled for an upcoming prelaunch activity and first nighttime launch of a SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket, which will be carrying four agency technology missions to help improve future spacecraft design and performance.

    The launch window for the Falcon Heavy opens at 11:30 p.m. EDT Monday, June 24, from historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The launch, as well as a live technology show, will air NASA Television and the agency's website.

    SpaceX and the U.S. Department of Defense will launch two dozen satellites to space, including four NASA payloads that are part of the Space Test Program-2, managed by the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center. The four payloads include two NASA technology demonstrations to improve how spacecraft propel and navigate, as well as two NASA science missions to help us better understand the nature of space and how it impacts technology on spacecraft and the ground.

    Full NASA TV coverage is as follows:

    Sunday, June 23

    Noon - NASA prelaunch technology TV show from Kennedy.

    Participants include:

    • Todd Ely and Jill Seubert, interplanetary navigators at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, who are also the principal and deputy principal investigators for the Deep Space Atomic Clock. They will explain the relationship between time and navigation as well as the new space clock that could change how we navigate on the Moon, to Mars and beyond.
    • Christopher McLean, principal investigator for NASA's Green Propellant Infusion Mission at Ball Aerospace, and Joe Cassady, executive director of space at Aerojet Rocketdyne. They will explain how a non-toxic fuel and new propulsion system could take the small satellite revolution beyond what it is today.
    • Nicola Fox, director of NASA's Heliophysics Division, will discuss the Space Environment Testbeds and how its four experiments will reveal the ways local space weather affects spacecraft hardware.
    • Rick Doe, payload program manager at SRI International, will share how two CubeSats making up the Enhanced Tandem Beacon Experiment will work with six other satellites to study irregularities in Earth's upper atmosphere that interfere with GPS and communications signals.

    Monday, June 24

    • 9:30 p.m. - Live NASA TV coverage begins of the return to Earth of NASA astronaut Anne McClain and two other International Space Station residents, with landing scheduled at 10:48 p.m. (Public Channel)
    • 11 p.m. - NASA TV launch commentary begins ahead of the targeted 11:30 p.m. launch. NASA TV will simulcast the SpaceX STP-2 webcast starting about 15 minutes before liftoff. (Media Channel)
    Prelaunch and launch day coverage will include blog updates as milestones occur: http://blogs.nasa.gov/spacex

    Learn more about the NASA technologies aboard this launch: https://www.nasa.gov/spacex


    June 19, 2019

    M19-058

    Final Roll of Mobile Launcher Before Artemis 1 Moon Mission

    NASA's mobile launcher atop crawler-transporter 2
    This aerial view shows NASA's mobile launcher atop crawler-transporter 2 as it moves along the crawlerway,
    making its way to Launch Pad 39B at the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
    Credits: NASA

    NASA's mobile launcher makes its final roll on crawler-transporter 2 to Launch Pad 39B prior to the launch of the first Artemis mission.

    Over the next three months, the mobile launcher will undergo final testing at the pad to certify the systems for launch. The next time the mobile launcher makes its trek out to Launch Pad 39B, it will transport NASA's Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft for the launch of Artemis 1, part of the agency's larger, sustainable Moon to Mars exploration approach.

    Learn more about NASA's Artemis 1 mission at: https://www.nasa.gov/artemis-1


    June 19, 2019

    Gateway Logistics Industry Day

    Artist conception of NASA's Gateway logistics module in lunar orbit.
    Artist concept of the logistics module docked to Gateway in lunar orbit. NASA will seek
    solicitations from American companies to deliver cargo and other supplies to the lunar
    outpost that will support human exploration of the Moon by 2024.
    Credits: NASA

    NASA will seek solicitations from American companies to deliver cargo and other supplies to the lunar outpost that will support human exploration of the Moon by 2024.

    The agency issued a draft solicitation June 14 to industry seeking comments for a future opportunity for American companies to deliver cargo and other supplies to the Gateway in lunar orbit as part of plans to accelerate a human return to the Moon within the next five years.

    The first logistics service to the orbital outpost is expected to deliver science, cargo and other supplies in support of the agency's new Artemis lunar exploration program including sending the first woman and the next man to the surface of the Moon by 2024.

    NASA's lunar exploration plans are based on a two-phase approach: the first is focused on speed - landing astronauts on the Moon by 2024 - while the second will establish a sustained human presence on and around the Moon by 2028. The agency will use what we learn on the Moon to prepare for the next giant leap - sending astronauts to Mars.

    Learn more about NASA's Gateway at: https://www.nasa.gov/topics/moon-to-mars


    June 04, 2019

    18th SpaceX Cargo Launch to Space Station

    A SpaceX Dragon cargo spacecraft is scheduled to launch in July on a Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS) in Florida. This will be the company's 18th mission under NASA's Commercial Resupply Services contract.

    The International Space Station is a convergence of science, technology and human innovation that demonstrates new technologies and enables research not possible on Earth. The space station has been occupied continuously since November 2000. In that time, more than 230 people and a variety of international and commercial spacecraft have visited the orbiting laboratory.

    The space station remains the springboard to NASA's next great leap in exploration, including missions to the Moon by 2024 and on to Mars. Space station research also provides opportunities for other U.S. government agencies, private industry, and academic and research institutions to conduct microgravity research that leads to new technologies, medical treatments, and products that improve life on Earth.

    For launch countdown coverage, NASA's launch blog, and more information about the mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/spacex


    May 04, 2019

    SpaceX Dragon Heads to Space Station with NASA Science, Cargo

    After launching at 2:48 a.m. EDT Saturday, a SpaceX Dragon cargo spacecraft is on its way to the International Space Station with approximately 5,500 pounds of NASA cargo and science investigations that include research into Earth's carbon cycle and the formation of asteroids and comets.

    SpaceX's Falcon 9 launches Dragon with cargo for the ISS.
    SpaceX's Falcon 9 launches Dragon with cargo for the International Space Station.

    The spacecraft launched on a Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida and is scheduled to arrive at the orbiting laboratory on Monday, May 6. Dragon will join five other spacecraft currently at the station. Coverage of the spacecraft's approach and arrival will begin at 5:30 a.m. on NASA Television and the agency's website.

    Dragon's launch comes on the heels of robotics ground controllers in Mission Control Houston successfully completing an operation to remove a failed Main Bus Switching Unit (MBSU) aboard the space station and replace it with a spare. The completion of the robotics work marks the second replacement of an MBSU not involving a spacewalk. The space station continues to be a critical test bed where NASA is pioneering new methods to explore space, from complex robotic work to refueling spacecraft in flight and developing new robotic systems to assist astronauts on the frontier of space. Technologies such as these will be vital as NASA looks to return astronauts to the Moon by 2024.

    Expedition 59 astronauts David Saint-Jacques of the Canadian Space Agency and Nick Hague of NASA will use the space station's robotic arm to grapple Dragon around 7 a.m. Coverage of robotic installation to the Earth-facing port of the Harmony module will begin at 9 a.m.

    This delivery, SpaceX's 17th cargo flight to the space station under NASA's Commercial Resupply Services contract, will support dozens of new and existing investigations. NASA's research and development work aboard the space station contributes to the agency's deep space exploration plans, including returning astronauts to the Moon's surface in five years.

    Here are details about some of the scientific investigations Dragon is delivering to the space station:

    Measuring Atmospheric CO2 from Space
    NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory-3 (OCO-3) examines the complex dynamics of Earth's atmospheric carbon cycle by collecting measurements to track variations in a specific type of atmospheric carbon dioxide. Understanding carbon sources can aid in forecasting increased atmospheric heat retention and reduce its long-term risks.

    Putting Microalgae on the Menu
    The Photobioreactor investigation aims to demonstrate how microalgae can be used together with existing life support systems on the space station to improve recycling of resources. The cultivation of microalgae for food, and as part of a life support system to generate oxygen and consume carbon dioxide, could be helpful in future long-duration exploration missions, as it could reduce the amount of consumables required from Earth.

    Organs on Chips Advance Human Health Research
    Scientists are using a new technology called tissue chips, which could help predict the effectiveness of potential medicines in humans. Fluid that mimics blood can be passed through the chip to simulate blood flow, and can include drugs or toxins. In microgravity, changes occur in human health and human cells that resemble accelerated aging and disease processes. This investigation allows scientists to make observations over the course of a few weeks in microgravity rather than the months it would take in a laboratory on Earth.

    Multi-Use Microgravity Experiment Platform
    The Hermes facility allows scientists to study the dusty, fragmented debris covering asteroids and moons, called regolith. Once installed by astronauts on the space station, scientists will be able to take over the experiment from Earth to study how regolith particles behave in response to long-duration exposure to microgravity, including changes to pressure, temperate and shocks from impacts and other forces. The investigations will provide insight into the formation and behavior of asteroids, comets, impact dynamics and planetary evolution.

    These are just a few of the hundreds of investigations that will help us learn how to keep astronauts healthy during long-duration space travel and demonstrate technologies for future human and robotic exploration beyond low-Earth orbit to the Moon and Mars. Space station research also provides opportunities for other U.S. government agencies, private industry, and academic and research institutions to conduct microgravity research that leads to new technologies, medical treatments, and products that improve life on Earth.

    For more than 18 years, humans have lived and worked continuously aboard the International Space Station, advancing scientific knowledge and demonstrating new technologies, and making research breakthroughs not possible on Earth that will enable long-duration human and robotic exploration into deep space. A global endeavor, more than 230 people from 18 countries have visited the unique microgravity laboratory that has hosted more than 2,500 research investigations from researchers in 106 countries.

    Get breaking news, images and features from the station on social media, at: https://instagram.com/iss and https://www.twitter.com/ISS_Research and https://www.twitter.com/Space_Station


    April 24, 2019

    NASA's Next Space Station Resupply Launch


    The two-stage Falcon 9 launch vehicle lifts off Space Launch Complex 40
    A two-stage SpaceX Falcon 9 launch vehicle lifts off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on December 5, 2018 at 1:16 p.m. EST, carrying the 16th Commercial Resupply Services mission tothe International Space Station.
    Re-Re-Scheduled NET for Wednesday, May 3rd at 3:11am exact.

    NASA commercial cargo provider SpaceX is targeting no earlier than 4:22 a.m. EDT Tuesday, April 30, for the launch of its next resupply mission to the International Space Station. Live coverage will begin on NASA Television and the agency's website Monday, April 29, with prelaunch events.

    This is the 17th SpaceX mission under NASA's Commercial Resupply Services contract. The Dragon spacecraft will deliver supplies including critical materials to support dozens of the more than 250 science and research investigations that will occur during Expeditions 59 and 60. The spacecraft's unpressurized trunk will transport NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory 3 (OCO-3) and Space Test Program-Houston 6 (STP-H6).

    OCO-3 will be installed robotically on the exterior of the space station's Japanese Experiment Module Exposed Facility Unit, where it will measure and map carbon dioxide from space to increase our understanding of the relationship between carbon and climate. STP-H6 is an X-ray communication investigation that will be used to perform a space-based demonstration of a new technology for generating beams of modulated X-rays. This technology may be useful for providing efficient communication to deep space probes, or communicating with hypersonic vehicles where plasma sheaths prevent traditional radio communications.

    The spacecraft will take two days to reach the space station before installation on Thursday, May 2. When it arrives, astronaut David Saint-Jacques of the Canadian Space Agency will grapple Dragon, with NASA astronaut Nick Hague serving as backup. NASA astronaut Christina Koch will assist by monitoring telemetry during Dragon's approach. Station crew will monitor Dragon vehicle functions during rendezvous. After Dragon capture, mission control in Houston will send commands to the station's arm to rotate and install the spacecraft on the bottom of the station's Harmony module.


    April 11, 2019

    NASA Awards Launch Services Contract for Asteroid Redirect Test Mission

    NASA has selected SpaceX in Hawthorne, California, to provide launch services for the agency's Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission, the first-ever mission to demonstrate the capability to deflect an asteroid by colliding a spacecraft with it at high speed - a technique known as a kinetic impactor.

    The total cost for NASA to launch DART is approximately $69 million, which includes the launch service and other mission related costs.

    The DART mission currently is targeted to launch in June 2021 on a Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 4E at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. By using solar electric propulsion, DART will intercept the asteroid Didymos' small moon in October 2022, when the asteroid will be within 11 million kilometers of Earth.

    NASA's Launch Services Program at Kennedy Space Center in Florida will manage the SpaceX launch service. The DART Project office is located at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland, and is managed by the Planetary Missions Program Office at Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, for NASA's Planetary Defense Coordination Office in Washington.

    For more information about NASA programs and missions, visit: https://www.nasa.gov


    February 20, 2019

    NASA, SpaceX Demo-1 Events and Broadcasts

    NASA and commercial crew provider SpaceX are targeting 2:48 a.m. EST Saturday, March 2, for the launch of the Demo-1 uncrewed flight test to the International Space Station. The uncrewed test flights will be the first time a commercially-built and operated American rocket and spacecraft designed for humans will launch to the space station.

    SpaceX's Crew Dragon and Falcon 9 lifting off: concept
    This artist concept depicts SpaceX's Crew Dragon and Falcon 9 lifting off from historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center.
    Image Credit: SpaceX

    The SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft will launch on a Falcon 9 rocket from the historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. About 10 minutes after launch, Crew Dragon will reach its preliminary orbit. It is scheduled to dock to station Sunday, March 3 at 5:55 a.m. EST. The Crew Dragon spacecraft will carry about 400 pounds of crew supplies and equipment to the space station and return some critical research samples to Earth.

    The spacecraft will spend about five days attached to the space station. Dragon will remain at the space station until March 8 when the spacecraft will return to Earth. About five hours after Dragon leaves the station, it will conduct its deorbit burn, which lasts up to 10 minutes. It takes about 30 minutes for Dragon to re-enter the Earth's atmosphere and splash down in the Atlantic Ocean. The deadline for media to apply for accreditation for this launch has passed, but more information about media accreditation is available by contacting ksc-media-accreditat@mail.nasa.gov.

    NASA TV Launch Coverage
    NASA TV live coverage will begin at 2 a.m. For NASA TV downlink information, schedules and links to streaming video, visit http://www.nasa.gov/ntv.
    Audio only of the news conferences and launch coverage will be carried on the NASA "V" circuits, which may be accessed by dialing 321-867-1220, -1240, -1260 or -7135. On launch day, "mission audio," the launch conductor's countdown activities without NASA TV launch commentary, will be carried on 321-867-7135. Launch also will be available on local amateur VHF radio frequency 146.940 MHz heard within Brevard County on the Space Coast.

    NASA Web Launch Coverage Launch day coverage of the SpaceX Demo-1 flight will be available on the NASA website. Coverage will include live streaming and blog updates beginning at 2 a.m. as the countdown milestones occur.

    Postlaunch News Conference on NASA TV A postlaunch news conference will occur at about 5 a.m. in Kennedy's Press Site TV Auditorium and air live on NASA Television and the agency's website at http://www.nasa.gov/ntv.

    NASA's Commercial Crew Program is working with the American aerospace industry through a public-private partnership to launch astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil for the first time since 2011. The goal of the program is safe, reliable and cost-effective transportation to and from the International Space Station, which could allow for additional research time and increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity's testbed for exploration.

    For launch countdown coverage, NASA's launch blog, and more information about the mission, visit: https://www.nasa.gov/commercialcrew




     


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