Earlier this morning three NASA and one European Space Agency astronaut arrived at the Kennedy Space Center to continue their quarantine ahead of the Crew-4 mission to the International Space Station. Commander, Kjell Lindgren, Pilot, Bob Hines, Mission Specialist 2, Jessica Watkins, are all NASA astronauts. Mission Specialist 1, Samantha Cristoforetti is from the ESA (European Space Agency)
The fourth operational launch for NASA’s commercial crew program will begin this Saturday, April 23rd at 5:26 am E.T. as they ride atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket in their new Crew Dragon capsule aptly named Freedom. From launch it will take them roughly twenty-four hours to reach the space station, with docking expected around 6:00 am E.T. on Sunday, April 24th.
Freedom will dock at the same port the Axiom-1 mission used as they are set to return back to Earth tomorrow, April 19th. Ax1, of course the first all private crewed mission to the ISS was slated to return after only eight days, but weather conditions have kept them safely onboard the orbital station for three days longer than planned.
The Launch Readiness Review will take place this Thursday around 9:30 pm E.T. where we expect a NASA teleconference where we will know the status of the mission and if they are continuing as planned. Follow along with us at NHS in the coming days to read more about the Crew-4 mission.