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NASA Sends a Crew of 5 to Space

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Courtesy Of NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (Flickr CC0)

NASA’s New Mission

Following their launch to the International Space Station at 12:00 EDT on Wednesday from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The crew members assigned to NASA’s SpaceX Crew-5 mission are now in orbit. The agency’s fifth commercial crew rotation mission with SpaceX aboard the orbiting laboratory will feature the international crew.

Astronauts Josh Cassada and Nicole Mann were aboard the Dragon Endurance spacecraft, which was launched into orbit by a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. For their science mission in microgravity on board the space station, JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) astronaut Koichi Wakata and Roscosmos cosmonaut Anna Kikina, both traveling on the Dragon, will act as mission specialists.

Missions like Crew-5 are evidence that the commercial space exploration industry is in the midst of a golden age. The spirit of collaboration, scientific innovation, and the desire for new discoveries are the driving forces behind this new era, according to NASA Administrator Bill Nelson. Crew-5 will carry out more than 200 scientific investigations and technological tests during their stay on the International Space Station, including investigations into the printing of human organs in space and a better understanding of heart disease. But keep in mind that these missions will improve life on Earth even while eyes are fixed skyward on the stars.

Wakata is on his fifth space flight, while Mann, Cassada, and Kikina are making their first. As part of the agency’s Commercial Crew Program, this is the sixth SpaceX flight that includes NASA astronauts, including the Demo-2 test voyage to the space station in 2020.

Control Center

SpaceX’s mission control center in Hawthorne, California, will oversee a sequence of autonomous spacecraft moves during Dragon’s journey, and NASA crews will keep an eye on space station activities from the Mission Control Center at the agency’s Johnson Space Center in Houston.

Around 4:57 p.m., Dragon will dock by itself to the Harmony module’s space-facing port. Friday, October 8. Live coverage of the docking and hatch opening will be available on NASA Television, their app, and the organization’s website. Around 8:15 p.m., NASA will also broadcast the ceremony welcoming the astronauts to the orbiting outpost.

Mann, Cassada, Wakata, and Kikina will join the Expedition 68 crew of the International Space Station, which also includes Sergey Prokopyev and Dmitri Petelin of Roscosmos, Samantha Cristoforetti of the European Space Agency, and Bob Hines, Kjell Lindgren, Frank Rubio, and Jessica Watkins of NASA. Up until Crew-4 astronauts Hines Lindgren, Watkins, and Cristoforetti return to Earth a few days later, there will be 11 people on board the space station for a little period of time.

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Courtesy Of saxettom (Flickr CC0)

Hefty Amount Of Time

In order to prepare for human travel beyond low-Earth orbit and to improve life on Earth, Crew-5 will spend several months on board the space station doing new scientific research in fields. They will study things like cardiovascular health, bioprinting, and fluid dynamics in microgravity.

Kathryn Lueders, an associate administrator for NASA’s Space Operations Mission Directorate in Washington, stated that the ISS continues to serve a crucial role in helping the agency and its partners understand and optimize the unique properties of the microgravity environment. She also stated that she is appreciative of all the workers that toiled to make sure Team-5 launched safely despite the recent hurricane so the crew could complete their mission to the orbiting laboratory.

The Crew-5 mission is part of NASA’s ongoing efforts to keep the United States at the forefront of human spaceflight. NASA is able to carry out crucial research and technological experiments taking place thanks to routine commercial crew rotation trips. The agency’s Artemis mission will use this research to benefit people on Earth and establish the foundation for future human exploration. This mission will send astronauts to the Moon to be ready for future journeys to Mars.

Written By Dylan Santoyo

Sources

Nasa: NASA’s SpaceX Crew-5 Launches to International Space Station

NBC: SpaceX capsule heads to space station ferrying NASA crew and Russian

The Guardian: Nicole Mann becomes first Native American woman in space on Crew-5 mission

Top and Featured Image Courtesy of NASA Goddard Space Flight Center’s Flickr page – Creative Commons License

Inset Image Courtesy of saxettom’s Flickr page – Creative Commons License

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