SpaceX and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) have once again delayed the launch of the Crew-3 mission.
The already-delayed launch scheduled for November 6 will no longer push through due to poor weather conditions forecasted for the day. While SpaceX and NASA have yet to name a new launch date, it will be no earlier than November 8, Monday.
The Crew-3 launch was originally scheduled to take place on October 31. It was delayed to November 3 and then to November 6.
Another factor that can affect the new launch date of the Crew-3 mission is the return of the Crew-2 mission. The Crew-2 mission, which launched to the International Space Station last April, may be brought home ahead of the Crew-3 launch first.
This is due to the Crew-2’s Crew Dragon capsule being rated to stay in space for only seven months.
SpaceX, NASA Delay Crew-3 Mission Again
SpaceX and NASA have decided to delay the launch of the Crew-3 mission yet again. The latest delay is due to the poor weather conditions forecasted for November 6.
The Crew-3 mission, which aims to bring four astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS) for a six-month stay, was originally scheduled to launch on October 31. The Crew-3 launch experienced its first delay when it was rescheduled to November 3 due to poor weather conditions.
The launch was then delayed a second time due to one of the four astronauts experiencing a minor medical issue, according to a report by Space.
Related Article: SpaceX, NASA Crew-3 Mission Launch Delayed Again Until Nov. 6-Astronaut Medical Issue?
Crew-2 Return Can Delay Crew-3 Launch
The weather is not the only factor that will determine the new launch date of the Crew-3 mission. Another factor that can delay the launch of the Crew-3 mission even more is the return of the Crew-2 mission.
“Mission teams now are considering whether to return the agency’s SpaceX Crew-2 mission from the space station ahead of launching the next crew rotation due to the associated weather considerations for both launch and recovery operations,” NASA said in a blog post published on its official website.
According to the report by Space, “Crew-2, which launched in April, is in a bit of a time crunch, since its Dragon spacecraft is rated to stay in space for approximately 210 days, or 7 months.” Because of this, NASA may opt to bring the Crew-2 astronauts home first before launching the Crew-3 astronauts to space.
The earliest possible date and time that the Crew-2 mission can undock from the ISS is on November 7, Sunday, at 1:05 p.m. EST. Should it not be feasible for any reason, the mission may also undock on November 8.
Should the Crew-2 mission be unable to undock from the ISS on both dates, the Crew-3 mission may be able to launch on November 8 at 9:51 p.m. EST.
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Written by Isabella James
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