SpaceX Confirms First ISS Flight for May 7
April 25, 2012 9:44 AM
comment(s) - last by
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk
There was a slight delay from the April 30 estimated launch date for more testing
SpaceX has finally set a date for its first launch to the International Space Station (ISS): May 7, 2012.
SpaceX, which will be the first private company to send a spacecraft to the ISS, has been working on its Dragon cargo capsule for the big flight. However,
a few delays
have put the Dragon a bit behind the original schedule.
The Dragon was originally set to launch on February 7, but SpaceX said that it wanted to conduct more tests before the cargo capsule made its way into space.
Earlier this month, NASA set a second
estimated launch date for April 30
, but the date was never set in stone. In fact, NASA associate administrator for Human Exploration and Operations Bill Gerstenmaier said there was only a "good chance" of the Dragon making the April 30 deadline.
Now, after a bit more testing, SpaceX has confirmed the final launch date as May 7 instead. The Dragon will lift off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida atop a Falcon 9 rocket. The launch is set for exactly 9:38 a.m. (1338 GMT).
"We appreciate that SpaceX is taking the necessary time to help ensure the success of this historic flight," said Gerstenmaier. "We will continue to work with SpaceX in preparing for the May 7 launch to the International Space Station."
The Dragon capsule will carry 1,149 pounds of cargo to the ISS and return a 1,455 pound shipment back to Earth.
The delays and extra testing will be well worth it come May 7, when SpaceX will make history and represent the United States' re-entry into space travel. Last year, NASA
retired its space shuttle fleet
which U.S. astronauts depended on for delivering supplies to the ISS. Since that retirement, American astronauts have been forced to depend on Russian Soyuz rockets to make their way to the ISS -- and the cost of one seat on the Russian spacecraft is expected to increase to $63 million by 2015.
It was clear that the U.S. needed a new way into space, and SpaceX gladly jumped to the opportunity with its Dragon cargo capsule, which is intended for both manned and unmanned missions.
such as BlueOrigin LLC, Sierra Nevada Corporation and Boeing,
have jumped into the private space travel ring as well, but SpaceX raced to the top in a hurry. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk pushed past issues like delays and
public criticism from
American space heroes
Neil Armstrong (the first astronaut to step foot upon the Moon on Apollo 11) and Gene Cernan (the last man to step foot upon the moon on Apollo 17) to be the first private company to launch a spacecraft to the ISS.
"I was very sad to see that because those guys are, you know, those guys are heroes of mine, so it's really tough," said Musk. "You know, I wish they would come and visit, and see the hard work that we're doing here. And I think that would change their mind.
"What I'm trying to do is to make a significant difference in space flight, and help make space flight accessible to almost anyone. And I would hope for as much support in that direction as we, as we can receive."
NASA has provided about $270 million to private companies in order to encourage a new era of commercial space travel and tourism.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
4/25/2012 10:45:59 AM
That guy Musk looks like a crooked used car salesman. What good is money and fame if you cannot afford a decent face reconstruction ?
4/25/2012 2:14:22 PM
I liked how he looked in Iron Man 2. Definitely more appealing than your ugly fucking mug, bitch.
4/25/2012 2:42:21 PM
Butthurt because somebody called your boyfriend fugly ? Go play with your iBrator some more dumbphuck !
"You can bet that Sony built a long-term business plan about being successful in Japan and that business plan is crumbling." -- Peter Moore, 24 hours before his Microsoft resignation
NASA: SpaceX Dragon Expected to Leave for ISS on April 30
April 17, 2012, 10:22 AM
Quick Note: NASA's Remaining Space Shuttles Stripped, Prepared for Final Resting Places
March 29, 2012, 2:45 PM
SpaceX Dragon Capsule Passes NASA Crew Trial, CEO Responds to Criticism from Neil Armstrong
March 19, 2012, 1:07 PM
SpaceX Delays Dragon's First Launch to ISS
January 17, 2012, 9:36 AM
Obama Admin Looks to Revive Bill for Greater Media Protection in Wake of AP Controversy
May 16, 2013, 1:47 PM
Notre Dame Designs Camera to Detect Age of Bruise for Abuse Checks
May 16, 2013, 9:05 AM
Report: Climate Change Could Wash Away Historic Jamestown Site Within 100 Years
May 15, 2013, 5:39 PM
U.S. Navy Launches First Unmanned X-47B Aircraft from Carrier Flight Deck
May 15, 2013, 12:13 PM
Government Creates Global Warming "Refugee" Crisis in Alaska
May 15, 2013, 6:37 AM
Quick Note: ISS Astronaut Records David Bowie Cover from Space
May 13, 2013, 1:01 PM
Most Popular Articles
Report: Microsoft Eyes Return to "Dying" Windows 7 Path After Windows 8 Flop
May 13, 2013, 9:50 AM
Windows 8.1 Will Be Free; Microsoft Holds Onto Struggling ARM Variant
May 14, 2013, 2:57 PM
Bill Gates Gets Teary-Eyed While Discussing Steve Jobs, Shows Off Life-Saving Tech on 60 Minutes
May 13, 2013, 12:30 PM
Google Announces "Pure" Galaxy Nexus S4 for $649, Android Updates
May 15, 2013, 1:42 PM
Google's Eric Schmidt: "Don't Be Evil" was Stupid
May 14, 2013, 11:00 AM
Latest Blog Posts
Parents of Pre-Teen Drivers Commonly Practice Distracted Driving Says Study
May 9, 2013, 7:16 AM
Apple's iOS 7 Running Into Internal Delays Due to Massive Overhaul
May 1, 2013, 4:26 PM
Elon Musk Willing to Spend More Money on Widening of 405 Freeway
Apr 26, 2013, 7:28 PM
New $100 Bill Due in October
Apr 24, 2013, 11:52 PM
Volkswagen Shows off iBeetle in Shanghai
Apr 22, 2013, 9:29 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2013 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information