The evening of may 27 will be a manned flight of SpaceX to the ISS from the United States — an event that the American space industry waited for almost 10 years. Edition BBC said that one should know about this mission and why it is so important for the space industry — and not only American.
On Wednesday, around 16:30 in new York at the launch pad in Florida will rise into the sky the Falcon 9 rocket which should put into orbit a manned spacecraft SpaceX Crew Dragon.
On Board will be two American astronauts 49-year-old Robert Behnken and 53-year-old Douglas Hurley. Two weeks ago both were sent to the quarantine coronavirus although they are not found in NASA feared what the astronauts will bring the disease to the ISS.
The launch of the plans to personally visit the President of the United States Donald trump, while the General audience will witness the launch of the only live.
The pandemic coronavirus, NASA decided not to allow spectators in the observation deck of the Space center Kennedy.
Since 2011, when the US shut down the Space Shuttle program, the country was without its own manned spacecraft. American astronauts could actually get to the ISS only one way — on the Russian Soyuz spacecraft.
The problem is not only that this was the international prestige of the United States, but that Russian services cost NASA dearly for sending had to pay a lot of money.
While Russia has consistently raised prices while the cost of sending only one astronaut is about $90 million dollars — about 4 times more than 10 years ago.
But using SpaceX ships, according to estimates, will cost Americans just $55 million per seat.
The refusal of the Americans from the use of “Unions”, in fact, will be a new Chapter in American space industry and the end of dependence on Russia. But for Russian experts are already predicting problems: state Corporation “Roskosmos” may lose a significant portion of their income.
The head of “Roskosmos” Dmitry Rogozin has accused NASA and SpaceX in the dumping and in response announced a reduction in the cost of Russian launches by 30%.
Looks like the Crew Dragon
However, the difference Crew Dragon from the “Union” is not only the cost of the trip. The vehicle was designed to flight it was comfortable for the astronauts.
In the capsule there are four portholes, through which the crew can watch the Earth and other objects without getting up from their seats. Seat made of carbon fiber and Alcantara — textile material similar to suede.
The ship partially be implemented by using the touch screens on them, astronauts will be able to see the information about vehicle position, distance to destination, and the conditions behind, and the like.
The ship is also equipped with climate control, so the crew was able to set a comfortable temperature.
Manage Crew Dragon as possible from the ship, and from the point of mission control on Earth.
How will flight
It is expected that 12 minutes after launch the Crew Dragon to orbit, separates from the carrier rocket Falcon 9 will continue movement to the ISS while the first stage of Falcon 9 back on Earth.
If all goes according to plan, may 28, at about 15:00 in new York, the ship will dock with the International space station, the astronauts will open the hatches and enter the ISS, where it is estimated there will be from 30 to 110 days.
How long the ISS will be the ship’s Crew Dragon is not clear yet, but plans to return the ship will be already with several other astronauts.
If during startup something goes wrong, the crew will immediately activate the emergency separation from rocket — Crew Dragon will detach the capsule with the astronauts and parachutes will land in one of the defined zones in the Atlantic ocean, where the crew is evacuated.
Internet users were able to understand how will be the process of joining Crew Dragon to ISS, SpaceX released an online simulator game: try yourself in the role of crew member, everyone can.
Space Elon musk plans
It is important that for sending astronauts to the ISS will be accountable to a private entity, and NASA, by and large, will act as its client.
For the past 10 years, NASA has funded two projects — in addition to SpaceX, the money from the state also received the Boeing company. However, agile was exactly SpaceX, his rocket Boeing will conduct until the spring of next year.
Total NASA costs for both projects totaled more than $6 billion, but the Agency assured: in the long term savings will amount to tens of billions.
The founder of SpaceX Elon Musk went to this stage — sending people into space ever since she founded the company in 2002. Now this dream has all chances to be realized.
If the Crew Dragon launch is successful, NASA will adopt its use for routine delivery of astronauts to the ISS. Prior to that, SpaceX trust only the delivery of goods.
Future plans for SpaceX even bigger in the coming years the company plans to send into orbit tourists in the future to transport people and cargo to Mars.
18 years ago, founding SpaceX, the main purpose of the new company Musk has called it the colonization of Mars.
Online broadcast of the launch has not started yet, but the video where it is already available.