After NASA and SpaceX scrapped the Crew-6 launch just minutes before liftoff early Monday morning, officials announced they are now targeting Thursday for the next launch attempt.
The team aborted Monday’s launch attempt at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida when it suddenly encountered an issue in the ground systems that affected the loading of the ignition fluids for the Falcon 9 rocket that will carry the astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS). inside. the Crew Dragon Endeavor capsule.
They now aim to launch the crew at 12:34 am ET Thursday, March 2 (9:34 pm Wednesday, March 1).
Traveling aboard the Crew Dragon as part of Crew-6 will be NASA astronauts Stephen Bowen and Warren Hoburg, United Arab Emirates astronaut Sultan Al Neyadi, and Roscosmos cosmonaut Andrey Fedyaev.
Following numerous international astronauts who have traveled to the ISS over the past two decades, they will spend around six months aboard the orbiter, living and working in microgravity conditions.
Much of their time will be spent on carefully designed science experiments, including a spectacular effort to collect samples of bacteria and fungi from surfaces outside the space station.
The experiment will investigate whether any microbes are around parts of the station such as its life support system vents, and will try to determine how easily they can survive and spread. This should help planners of future manned missions into deep space better understand the potential dangers of human contamination in the environments.
The crew will also perform spacewalks to upgrade and maintain the station.
Assuming the Crew-6 mission will begin early Thursday morning ET, NASA will be streaming live on its YouTube channel. The docking procedure and welcome ceremony at the space station will also be broadcast when it takes place about 24 hours later.