NASA's SpaceX Crew-1 mission is DELAYED until Sunday due to winds

NASA’s SpaceX Crew-1 mission is DELAYED until Sunday due to winds as 250,000 daytrippers are expected to descend to watch the launch despite rising COVID infections

  • NASA announced the SpaceX Crew-1 mission will be delayed until Sunday
  • The initial launch was slated for Saturday, but strong winds are interfering 
  • Officials are expecting some 250,000 people will attend the launch 
  • However, there are concerns of crowds due to recent spikes in COVID cases 
  • NASA and SpaceX are now targeting November 15 at 7:27pm ET for launch 

The four astronauts set to soar to the International Space Station aboard SpaceX’s Falcon 9 will be spending an extra day on Earth.

The Crew-1 mission, which was slated for Saturday, has been pushed to Sunday due to poor weather that could interfere with rocket recovery operations – although conditions are 60 percent favorable for launch.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced the delay via Twitter, sharing that onshore winds are to blame.

However, the crew is set to strap on their futuristic white suits and head to Kennedy Space Center November 15 the 7:27pm launch.

Emergency officials are expecting a massive crowd of up to 250,000 out-of-county day-trippers to flock to the surrounding area.

This is despite the US spiking to 10.7 million coronavirus cases and Florida hitting some 864,000. 

This is the second NASA-SpaceX launch during the pandemic, as the last week in May the team sent astronauts Bob Behnken to the International Space Station (ISS) from Kennedy Space Center. 

However, the May 30 mission brought the same crowd to Merritt Island, Florida, where they crowded the beaches, roads and any place available to get a glimpse of that historic day.

Officials believe thousands are already in the area, as the initial launch was set for Saturday, but these visitors  will have to wait one more day to see the Falcon 9 take off from the launchpad. 

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The Crew-1 mission, which was slated for Saturday, has been pushed to Sunday due to poor weather that could interfere with rocket recovery operations – although conditions are 60 percent favorable for launch. NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced the delay via Twitter, sharing that onshore winds are to blame

‘Due to onshore winds and recovery operations, @NASA and @SpaceX are targeting launch of the Crew-1 mission with astronauts to the @Space_Station at 7:27 p.m. EST Sunday, Nov. 15. The first stage booster is planned to be reused to fly astronauts on Crew-2. #LaunchAmerica,’ Bridenstein posted on his Twitter account.

Crew-1 commander Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover, Shannon Walker and Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi are set to take off in the SpaceX Dragon Crew capsule they have named ‘Resilience.’

The mission follows a similar historic launch in May, when NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley traveled on SpaceX’s Crew Dragon to the International Space Station (ISS) that brought space flight back to US soil. 

And yesterday, Crew-1 took the same path Behnken and Hurley did on that exciting day – the team did a dress rehearsal preparing for this weekend’s launch. 

NASA astronauts Shannon Walker, left, Victor Glover, second from left, Mike Hopkins, second from right, and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) astronaut Soichi Noguchi are set to take off in the SpaceX Dragon Crew capsule they have named ‘Resilience

Emergency officials are expecting a massive crowd of up to 250,000 out-of-county day-trippers to flock to the surrounding area. This is despite the US spiking to 10.7 million coronavirus cases and Florida hitting some 864,000. Media began setting up Friday before hearing about the delay

The Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon spacecraft have been in place on the launch pad since November 9, waiting for the team to take the epic journey to the ISS

Donning the same SpaceX suites, the astronauts arrived at the complex in two Tesla Model X cars. 

The Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon spacecraft have been in place on the launch pad since November 9, waiting for the team to take the epic journey to the ISS.

The rehearsal concluded with the go and no-go poll for Falcon 9 propellant loading, which normally occurs 45 minutes before launch. 

This is the third the NASA-SpaceX mission has been rescheduled. 

Donning the same white, futuristic SpaceX suites, Crew-1 commander Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover, Shannon Walker and Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi arrived at the complex in two Tesla Model X cars during a dress rehearsal on Thursday

The team emerged from the crew quarters, smiled and waved, and then climbed back in the Teksa’s for the 20-minute ride to Launch Complex 39A

It was set for early October and then again for the early hours of Halloween day. 

Crew-1 conducted a dress rehearsal Thursday, while engineers reviewed preparations and are also keeping a close eye on Tropical Storm Eta that is providing a ‘forecasting challenge.’ 

Falcon 9 and the Crew Dragon capsule also completed the integrated static fire Wednesday, which is a key prelaunch milestone. 

Pictured is Crew-1 commander Michael Hopkins (right, front row), Victor Glover (left, front row), Shannon Walker (left, back row) and Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi (right, back row)

Weather permitting, the four person team will strap into the Crew Dragon capsule they named ‘Resilience’ and soar off to the ISS

Standing on the launch pad at Launch Complex 39A at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the rocket’s nine Merlin first-stage engines were fired for 7 seconds for this critical but routine test.

NASA and SpaceX are set to reconvene Friday to go over coronavirus protocols, the launch readiness review and conduct final assessment of the flight and crew.

The Crew-1 mission follows the successful launch in May when NASA and SpaceX sent Behnken and Hurley to the ISS.

The astronauts, named Crew-1, took the walk through Kennedy Space Center as did Ben Behnken (right) and Dough Hurley (left) in May when they prepared for ‘Launch America’ that brought space flight back to US soil.

Bob Benhken (back) and Doug Hurley (front) rode to Kennedy Space Center in May  in the same Tesla Model X as the Crew-1 team

This mission was the precursor for Saturday’s journey, as the team was tasked with testing the Crew Dragon capsule to validate its performance.

This included tests with the environmental control system, displays, maneuvering thrusters and other technologies.

However, when Behnken and Hurley returned from a two month stay on the ISS, NASA began moving forward with its plans for Crew 1.

The four astronauts in Crew-1 are set to spend six months on the ISS, where they will conduct a number of experiments and perform a range of tasks.

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