NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley, the first astronauts to ride a SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft into orbit, will meet the press today, May 22, in a virtual media event and you can watch it live online. The press conference will begin at 2:15 p.m. EDT (1815 GMT) and be streamed live on NASA Television.
Behnken and Hurley are veteran NASA astronauts. They are scheduled to launch to the International Space Station on May 27 on a Crew Dragon spacecraft and a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. LIftoff is scheduled for 4:33 p.m. EDT (2033 GMT) from NASA's Pad 39A of the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Earlier this week, on Tuesday, May 19, the astronauts arrived at the Kennedy Space Center from NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston. They are spending their final days before launch at the Astronaut Crew Quarters at the spaceport, reviewing the final details of their launch.
Later: NASA, SpaceX Demo-2 Update
NASA and SpaceX are conducting a final Flight Readiness Review through Friday, May 22, for the SpaceX Crew Dragon launch next week. They will announce their results today and you can watch live. A post-FRR press briefing is expected no earlier than 3 p.m. EDT (1700 GMT).
During today's FRR meeting, mission managers, SpaceX engineers and flight directors will meet to discuss the readiness of SpaceX's Demo-2 spacecraft and its Falcon 9 rocket. The mission, which has been four years in the making, will launch on May 27 at 4:33 p.m. EDT (2033 GMT).
Demo-2 will mark the first launch of NASA astronauts on an commercial spacecraft and the first launch of American astronauts into orbit on a U.S.-built vehicle from American soil.
NASA and SpaceX managers are gathered for a second day at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, with some participating remotely to maintain physical distance, for the Demo-2 Flight Readiness Review (FRR). The teams are expected to complete the review today. NASA and SpaceX also will hold a news conference on NASA Television approximately one hour after the review. More information about the timing of the briefing will be updated here and on social media as the review nears conclusion.
The participants for the media conference are:
NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley also will participate in a virtual media engagement at 2:15 p.m. today from Astronaut Crew Quarters at Kennedy, answering questions about their upcoming launch.
SpaceX will launch a Falcon 9 rocket carrying NASA astronauts Behnken and Hurley aboard the company’s Crew Dragon spacecraft to the International Space Station. Liftoff is planned for 4:33 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, May 27, from Launch Complex 39A at Kennedy. Part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program, the flight will return human spaceflight to the International Space Station from America for the first time since the retirement of the Space Shuttle Program in 2011.
Demo-2 will be SpaceX’s final test flight to validate its crew transportation system, including the Crew Dragon, Falcon 9, launch pad and operations capabilities. During the mission, the crew and SpaceX mission controllers will verify the performance of the spacecraft’s environmental control system, displays and control system, maneuvering thrusters, autonomous docking capability, and more. Behnken and Hurley will join the Expedition 63 crew on the station to conduct important research as well as support station operations and maintenance. While docked to the station, the crew will run tests to ensure the Crew Dragon spacecraft is capable on future missions of remaining connected to the station for up to 210 days. The specific duration for this mission will be determined after arrival based on the readiness of the next commercial crew launch. Finally, the mission will conclude with the Crew Dragon undocking from the station, deorbiting and returning Behnken and Hurley to Earth with a safe splashdown in the Atlantic Ocean.
'ISS Live!' Tune in to the space station
Find out what the astronauts and cosmonauts aboard the International Space Station are up to by tuning in to the "ISS Live" broadcast. Hear conversations between the crew and mission controllers on Earth and watch them work inside the U.S. segment of the orbiting laboratory. When the crew is off duty, you can enjoy live views of Earth from Space. You can watch and listen in the window below, courtesy of NASA.
"Live video from the International Space Station includes internal views when the crew is on-duty and Earth views at other times. The video is accompanied by audio of conversations between the crew and Mission Control. This video is only available when the space station is in contact with the ground. During 'loss of signal' periods, viewers will see a blue screen.
"Since the station orbits the Earth once every 90 minutes, it experiences a sunrise or a sunset about every 45 minutes. When the station is in darkness, external camera video may appear black, but can sometimes provide spectacular views of lightning or city lights below."