Stage 1 Successfully Lands on Drone Ship

Stage 1 of the Falcon 9 rocket completed its descent and landed on SpaceX’s drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean.

First Stage Main Engine Cutoff, First and Second Stages Separate

The rocket has reached first stage main engine cutoff (MECO). The first and second stages have separated. The second stage engine will start.

Liftoff! Crew-2 Astronauts on Their Way to the International Space Station

Liftoff of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket with Crew Dragon atop launches the Crew-2 mission at 5:49 a.m. EDT April 23, 2021, from Launch Complex 39A.
The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket with Crew Dragon atop lifts off from Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida on the Crew-2 mission April 23, 2021, at 5:49 a.m.

The Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon spacecraft Endeavour lifts off in the early morning from Launch Complex 39A at Kennedy Space Center. Crew-2 astronauts Shane Kimbrough, Megan McArthur, Akihido Hoshide, and Thomas Pesquet have begun their 23.5-hour journey to the International Space Station on NASA’s SpaceX Crew-2 mission. Liftoff occurred at 5:49:02 a.m. EDT.

Max Q (the moment of peak mechanical stress on the rocket) will happen in the next minute.

Crew-2 Remains on Schedule, Launch Less Than 15 Minutes Away

Fuel loading is complete on the first stage, and liquid oxygen loading has begun on the second stage. Everything remains on target for the 5:49 a.m. EDT launch of NASA’s SpaceX Crew-2 mission from Launch Complex 39A at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Propellant and Liquid Oxygen Loading Underway

The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket fueling has begun. RP-1 (rocket grade kerosene) loading and first stage liquid oxygen loading is underway. Liftoff is scheduled for 5:49 a.m. EDT.

For this morning’s launch, the U.S. Space Force 45th Weather Squadron continues to predict a 90% chance of favorable weather conditions at the launch pad for liftoff based on Falcon 9 Crew Dragon launch weather criteria.

Crew Access Arm Retracted; Launch Escape System Will be Armed

Close-up view of Crew Dragon and the Crew Access Arm.
A close-up view of the Crew Dragon and Crew Access Arm at Launch Complex 39A.

The crew access arm has retracted. A few minutes later Crew Dragon’s launch escape system will be armed. From liftoff until they reach orbit, roughly 12 minutes, the crew would be able to escape safely in the unlikely event of an anomaly.

Up next is propellant loading.

SpaceX Launch Director Verifies ‘Go’ for Propellant Load

In just a few minutes, the rocket’s first stage will be loaded with rocket grade kerosene called RP-1 and liquid oxygen. Then the second stage will be loaded with liquid oxygen.