SpaceX is a private company which deals in the Aerospace field. It manufactures rockets or space shuttles, founded in 2002 by Elon Musk with the vision of reducing the fare of space travel and to build colonies on Mars. Recently it has made another rocket named Falcon 9. This contract was given to SpaceX by NASA as NASA lost its space shuttle back in years and that is why they need to book the seats in Russian Soyuz rocket in order to send their astronauts into space. This contract was given to SpaceX as well as Boeing which two are the biggest Aerospace companies of the U.S.
Falcon 9 will become the first rocket developed by a private company which will take the U.S. astronauts to orbit. This Falcon 9 need to get tested first as it will be carrying humans to space. So this rocket was tested and a dummy was strapped onto one of the seats of Crew Dragon. This test flight will be conducted at 39A at Kennedy Space Center at 2:49 a.m. and the weather is predicted to remain good.
Bill Gerstenmaier who is the director of space operations at NASA said, “This is an absolutely critical first step as we move towards eventually returning crew launch capability back here to the U.S.” There might be a specific reason for launching the Falcon 9 at that time only. Rocket is not having any power which is required to steer into orbit and at the time decided will be coinciding with the moment Earth’s rotation carries the pad into the plane of ISS orbit. If the takeoff does not take place at that time then the testing will be postponed to another day.
The main agenda of making this rocket is to achieve the critical milestone for the US as after NASA lost its space shuttle it was costing so much for them to buy tickets in Soyuz Rocket of Russia. “Great nations should be able to launch their own astronauts into space,” NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine told CBS News. “And with our investment in the international space station, it’s as important for us as it is for anybody in the world.”
When the liftoff will happen then the Crew Dragon spacecraft will be taking some supplies to space along with the dummy named as Ripley, the name is inspired by the character in the movie Alien. It is expected to reach the International Space Station till Sunday. The astronauts which are deputed for this mission, Anne McClain, Canadian physician-astronaut David and Oleg Kononenko will be testing the crew dragon by the automated approach. The spacecraft will be in the space for five days and on 8 March, it will be coming back and land in the Atlantic Ocean.