NASA to launch SpaceX's unmanned Crew Dragon to ISS on March 2
New Delhi : NASA has finally agreed to launch SpaceX's Crew Dragon to International Space Station (ISS) on March 2. This will be the company's first unmanned test flight, said the space agency.
The flight, called Demonstration Mission-1 or DM-1, will be launched at 2.48 a.m. on March 2 from NASA’s Kennedy Space Centre in Florida.
According to NASA, this will be the first time when a commercial rocket designed for humans will be launched to the space station, since the retirement of the space shuttle in 2011.
The test flight is aimed to receive information on whether SpaceX's rocket is safe to transport astronauts to and from the space station.
“The uncrewed flight tests are a great dry run for not only our hardware, but for our team to get ready for our crewed flight tests,” said Kathy Lueders, Commercial Crew Programme Manager at NASA.
“NASA has been working together with SpaceX and Boeing to make sure we are ready to conduct these test flights and get ready to learn critical information that will further help us to fly our crews safely. We always learn from tests,” Lueders added.
NASA has retired its spacecraft way back in 2011 and since then it had been relying on Russia to send its astronauts in the space. The agreement with Russia to fly crews on Soyuz will end in 2019.