Astronauts Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover and Shannon Walker of NASA, and Soichi Noguchi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency will launch into space on board a SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft on a Falcon 9 rocket
The astronauts are part of the SpaceX Crew-1 mission, and will take to the skies at 06:40 GMT on October 31.
During the launch, astronauts Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover and Shannon Walker of NASA, and Soichi Noguchi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency will launch into space on board a SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft on a Falcon 9 rocket from NASA’s Kennedy Space Centre.
They’ll then complete the 248-mile journey to the International Space Station, where they’ll dock, joining NASA straonut Kate Rubins and Roscosmos’ Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey Kud-Sverchkov.
NASA said: “Following the launch, the Crew-1 astronauts are scheduled to arrive at the space station for a six-month science mission aboard the orbiting laboratory.”
NASA explained: “The launch will be the first time an international crew will fly aboard a NASA-certified, commercially-owned and operated American rocket and spacecraft from American soil.”
The launch comes shortly after NASA and SpaceX made history, after launching humans into space from US soil for the first time since 2011.
Back in May, astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley were launched to the International Space Station on board a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.
While astronauts are regularly launched from Earth to the International Space Station, these launches don’t usually take place in the US.
It also marked the first time that humans were launched into space on a SpaceX rocket.
SpaceX said: “Demo-2 is the final major test for SpaceX’s human spaceflight system to be certified by NASA for operational crew missions to and from the International Space Station.
“SpaceX is returning human spaceflight to the United States with one of the safest, most advanced systems ever built, and NASA’s Commercial Crew Program is a turning point for America’s future in space exploration that lays the groundwork for future missions to the Moon, Mars, and beyond.”
NASA, SpaceX, International Space Station, Crew Dragon Demo-2, Dragon 2, Michael S. Hopkins
World news – GB – NASA and SpaceX to launch 4 astronauts into space on historic mission next month