NASA will preview the upcoming SpaceX Crew-2 astronaut mission to the International Space Station today (March 1) in a pair of briefings beginning at 12:30 p.m. EST (1730 GMT).
SpaceX is scheduled to launch the Crew-2 mission to the International Space Station for NASA on April 20. On board will be four crewmembers: NASA astronauts Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur, JAXA astronaut Akihiko Hoshide, and ESA astronaut Thomas Pesquet.
First, agency officials will provide a mission overview today at 12:30 p.m. EST (1730 GMT). Then at 2 p.m. EST (1900 GMT), the Crew-2 astronauts will hold a news conference with reporters. You can watch both briefings live in the window above, courtesy of NASA TV, or directly via the agency’s website.
NASA will highlight the second crew rotation flight of a U.S. commercial spacecraft with astronauts to the International Space Station with a pair of news conferences beginning 12:30 p.m. EST Monday, March 1. The briefings, which will take place at the agency’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, will air live on NASA Television, the NASA app, and the agency’s website. The full astronaut crew flying on the mission also will be available for interviews.
NASA’s SpaceX Crew-2 mission will carry astronauts Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur of NASA, Akihiko Hoshide of JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency), and ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Thomas Pesquet aboard a Crew Dragon spacecraft atop a Falcon 9 rocket to the space station. The mission is scheduled to launch no earlier than April 20 from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
All media participation in these news conferences and interviews will be remote; no media will be accommodated at any NASA site. To participate in the briefings by phone or to request an interview with the crew members, reporters must contact Johnson’s newsroom at 281-483-5111 or firstname.lastname@example.org no later than 12 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 25.
Briefings and participants include (all times Eastern):
12:30 p.m. – Crew-2 Mission Overview News Conference with the following participants:
- Kathy Lueders, NASA associate administrator for human exploration and operations, NASA Headquarters
- Steve Stich, manager, Commercial Crew Program, NASA’s Kennedy Space Center
- Joel Montalbano, manager, International Space Station, Johnson
- Benji Reed, senior director, Human Spaceflight Programs, SpaceX
- Hiroshi Sasaki, JAXA vice president and director general, Human Spaceflight Technology Directorate
- David Parker, director, Human and Robotic Exploration, ESA
2 p.m. – Crew News Conference with the following participants:
- Astronaut Shane Kimbrough, spacecraft commander, NASA’s SpaceX Crew-2 mission
- Astronaut Megan McArthur, pilot, NASA’s SpaceX Crew-2 mission
- Astronaut Akihiko Hoshide, mission specialist, NASA’s SpaceX Crew-2 mission
- Astronaut Thomas Pesquet, mission specialist, NASA’s SpaceX Crew-2 mission
3:30 p.m. – Round Robin Crew Interviews
- Crew-2 astronauts will be available for a limited number of remote interviews following the news conference.
Gallery: Northrop Grumman Antares rocket launches Cygnus cargo ship to space station for NASA (Space)
Shane Kimbrough is commander of the Crew Dragon spacecraft and the Crew-2 mission. Kimbrough is responsible for all phases of flight, from launch to re-entry. He also will serve as an Expedition 65 flight engineer aboard the station. Selected as a NASA astronaut in 2004, Kimbrough first launched aboard space shuttle Endeavour for a visit to the station on the STS-126 mission in 2008, then aboard a Russian Soyuz spacecraft for Expedition 49/50 in 2016. He has spent a total of 189 days in space, and performed six spacewalks. Kimbrough also is a retired U.S. Army colonel and earned a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, and a master’s degree in operations research from the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta.
Megan McArthur is the pilot of the Crew Dragon spacecraft and second-in-command for the mission. McArthur is responsible for spacecraft systems and performance. She also will be a long-duration space station crew member, making her first trip to the space station. Selected as an astronaut in 2000, McArthur launched on space shuttle Atlantis as a mission specialist on STS-125, the final Hubble Space Telescope servicing mission, in 2009. McArthur operated the shuttle’s robotic arm over the course of the 12 days, 21 hours she spent in space, capturing the telescope and moving crew members during the five spacewalks needed to repair and upgrade it. She holds a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a doctorate in oceanography from the University of California, San Diego.
Akihiko Hoshide is a mission specialist for Crew-2. As a mission specialist, he will work closely with the commander and pilot to monitor the vehicle during the dynamic launch and re-entry phases of flight. Once aboard the station, Hoshide will become a flight engineer for Expedition 65. Hoshide joined the National Space Development Agency of Japan (NASDA, currently JAXA) in 1992 and was selected as an astronaut candidate in February 1999. Hoshide is a veteran of two spaceflights. In June 2008, he flew to the International Space Station on the STS-124 mission to deliver the Japanese Experiment Module “Kibo” to the International Space Station. From July to November 2012, he stayed on the space station for 124 days as a flight engineer for the Expedition 32/33 mission. The Crew Dragon will be the third spacecraft that Noguchi has flown to the orbiting laboratory.
Thomas Pesquet will also be a mission specialist for Crew-2, working with the commander and pilot to monitor the vehicle during the dynamic launch and re-entry phases of flight. Pesquet also will become a long-duration crew member aboard the space station. He was selected as an astronaut candidate by ESA in May 2009 and worked as a Eurocom, communicating with astronauts during spaceflights from the mission control center. He previously flew as part of Expeditions 50 and 51, launching aboard a Russian Soyuz spacecraft and spending 196 days in space. His mission also included two spacewalks to maintain the station: one to replace batteries on an electrical channel, and one to fix a cooling leak and service the robotic arm.
Space webcasts: Scrub! SpaceX aborts Falcon 9 launch of 60 Starlink satellites
Update for 8:40 p.m. ET: SpaceX aborted the launch of its Falcon 9 rocket carrying 60 Starlink satellites at the T-1 minute, 24 seconds mark. The next launch opportunity will be Monday, March 1, at 8:15 p.m. EST (0315 March 2 GMT).
A veteran SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will launch 60 new Starlink internet satellites into orbit Sunday (Feb. 28) and you can watch it live here. Liftoff is at 8:37 p.m. EST (0137 March 1 GMT).
Tonight’s launch has been delayed several times due to weather and the need for additional checks on the Falcon 9 rocket. This flight will mark the eight mission for this Falcon 9’s first stage, tying SpaceX’s record for reusability.
SpaceX’s webcast will begin about 15 minutes before liftoff. You can watch it above or directly from SpaceX here.
SpaceX is targeting Sunday, February 28 for launch of 60 Starlink satellites from Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The instantaneous window is at 8:37 p.m. EST, or 1:37 UTC on March 1.
The Falcon 9 first stage rocket booster supporting this mission previously flew on seven missions: the Iridium-8 mission, the Telstar 18 VANTAGE mission, and five Starlink missions. Following stage separation, SpaceX will land Falcon 9’s first stage on the “Of Course I Still Love You” droneship, which will be located in the Atlantic Ocean. One half of Falcon 9’s fairing previously flew on three Starlink missions, and the other half previously supported two Starlink missions.
You can watch a live webcast of this mission, which will begin about 15 minutes prior to liftoff, by clicking the image above.
Unbounded by traditional ground infrastructure, Starlink can deliver high-speed broadband internet to locations where access has been unreliable or completely unavailable. At a time when more people are working from home and more students are participating in virtual learning, internet connectivity is more important than ever. With Starlink, we are able to deploy quickly to areas that need it most.
In December, the Wise County Public School District in rural Virginia, where approximately 40% of teachers and students do not have internet access at home, announced it would provide some families in the area with Starlink to support remote learning. Starlink units were deployed in January and over 40 homes are now connected with high-speed internet.
If you’re interested in service, we recently starting taking orders on a first-come, first-served basis. To reserve your spot in line, head over to starlink.com for more information.
‘ISS Live!’ Tune in to the space station
Find out what the astronauts and cosmonauts aboard the International Space Station are up to by tuning in to the “ISS Live” broadcast. Hear conversations between the crew and mission controllers on Earth and watch them work inside the U.S. segment of the orbiting laboratory. When the crew is off duty, you can enjoy live views of Earth from Space. You can watch and listen in the window below, courtesy of NASA.
“Live video from the International Space Station includes internal views when the crew is on-duty and Earth views at other times. The video is accompanied by audio of conversations between the crew and Mission Control. This video is only available when the space station is in contact with the ground. During ‘loss of signal’ periods, viewers will see a blue screen.
“Since the station orbits the Earth once every 90 minutes, it experiences a sunrise or a sunset about every 45 minutes. When the station is in darkness, external camera video may appear black, but can sometimes provide spectacular views of lightning or city lights below.”
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