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NASA assigns 2 astronauts to SpaceX Crew-6 mission, launching in 2023

NASA astronauts Stephen Bowen and Woody Hoburg will fly aboard a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule launching to the International Space Station in 2023.
NASA astronauts Stephen Bowen and Woody Hoburg will fly aboard a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule launching to the International Space Station in 2023. (Image credit: NASA)

The first two seats of the sixth full-fledged NASA crew mission launched by SpaceX have been filled.

NASA astronauts Stephen Bowen and Woody Hoburg will both fly aboard the Crew-6 mission, which is due to blast off to the International Space Station in 2023, according to a NASA statement (opens in new tab) published Dec. 16.

Bowen will serve as spacecraft commander and Hoburg as its pilot, with two mission specialists to be assigned at a future date by international partners on the station, the statement noted.

Related: International Space Station at 20: A photo tour

Bowen is a spaceflight veteran who has completed three stays on NASA's space shuttle fleet; Crew-6 will be his first long-duration visit to the orbiting laboratory. During his previous missions, Bowen conducted seven spacewalks, and he previously served as a submarine officer.

Hoburg is a rookie astronaut who was selected in 2017. At the time, he was an assistant professor of aeronautics and astronautics at MIT who focused on engineering systems. He also holds a commercial pilot license and is one of NASA's 18 "Artemis team" astronauts, from whom the agency will choose the crewmembers for its Artemis 3 mission to return humans to the surface of the moon.

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Meghan is a senior writer at Space.com and has more than five years' experience as a science journalist based in New York City. She joined Space.com in July 2018, with previous writing published in outlets including Newsweek and Audubon. Meghan earned an MA in science journalism from New York University and a BA in classics from Georgetown University, and in her free time she enjoys reading and visiting museums. Follow her on Twitter at @meghanbartels.