SpaceX was, unfortunately, not able to proceed with their planned launch of Crew Dragon on Wednesday due to weather conditions near the Kennedy Space Center. The organization will hold its backup liftoff event on Saturday at 3:22 p.m. ET. How can you tune in to this historic event?
SpaceX's historic launch of Crew Dragon, which will be manned by astronauts Douglas Hurley and Bob Behnken, will take place this afternoon from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The event will be streamed on CBS, which means that viewers can tune in to their local CBS affiliate to watch the launch. Additionally, the event will be live-streamed by both SpaceX and NASA on their respective YouTube channels. The event was initially set to take place on Wednesday at 4:33 p.m. ET. However, after mission managers took note of several weather conditions in the area, they decided to delay the launch.
According to Reuters, mission managers cited a "number of weather violations" for why they delayed the event. On Wednesday, there was off-and-on rain in Florida as well as a threat of lightning near the Kennedy Space Center. The outlet also reported that the National Weather Service issued a tornado warning for the area. The launch was called off about 17 minutes before its planned departure time. When the delay was announced, Hurley and Behnken were already in their seats in the Crew Dragon and had been preparing for liftoff. They were reportedly in the spacecraft for two hours before the delay announcement.
Ultimately, Saturday marks the second time that Crew Dragon's liftoff can be attempted. The launch marks a significant moment for the future of NASA's space program. It marks the first time in nine years that American astronauts will be launched into space from within the United States. While the Crew Dragon has been sent to the International Space Station (ISS) before, this is the first time that it is doing so with crew on board. The astronauts set to go on this historic mission, Hurley and Behnken, have acknowledged just how much of an honor it is to be able to go back into space once again (both men are veterans to NASA's astronaut corps). Hurley shared at a NASA press conference, "This is a very, very special place to us. It's almost like a home away from home. So it's great to be back. It's an incredible time for NASA, the space program, once again launching U.S. crews from Florida and, hopefully, just a week from about right now."