Just over four hours from now, a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon spacecraft are scheduled to lift off from Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Complex 39A, carrying NASA astronauts Kjell Lindgren, Robert Hines, and Jessica Watkins, and ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti to the International Space Station for the fourth crew rotation mission under the agency’s Commercial Crew Program.
Liftoff is targeted for 3:52 a.m. EDT – an instantaneous launch window – and launch weather officers with the 45th Weather Squadron at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station are predicting a 90% chance of favorable weather conditions for launch. The primary weather concerns are cumulus cloud and flight through precipitation rules. Teams also continue to monitor the weather conditions along in Crew Dragon’s flight path, which is expected to be favorable for launch. Live countdown coverage will begin at 12 a.m. on NASA Television and the agency’s website, as well as right here on the blog.
Following liftoff, the Crew-4 astronauts will have a 16 1/2-hour journey to the space station, where they will be greeted by NASA astronauts Raja Chari, Tom Marshburn, Kayla Barron, and ESA astronaut Matthias Maurer – the Expedition 67 crew – already on board. Crew-4 astronauts will remain at the station for a six-month science mission, living and working as part of a seven-member crew.