SpaceX Successfully Launches First Rocket From Historic NASA Pad

Posted: Feb 20 2017, 5:47am CST | by , Updated: Feb 20 2017, 6:08am CST, in News | Latest Science News

SpaceX Successfully Launches First Rocket from Historic NASA Pad

SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket will open a New Era for Premier, Multi-user Spaceport

NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida will act as a multi-user spaceport due to the launch of Space X’s Falcon 9 rocket at launch complex 39-A, a historic launch pad. The CRS-10 is Space X’s 10th mission for commercial supply to the ISS International Space Station.

These days, pad 39-A is managed by Space X as an agreement with NASA. The first launch was Apollo 4 from Kennedy's Pad 39-A that happened on Nov. 9, 1967 and it was a first test flight of the Saturn V rocket with astronauts to the moon.

Then on April 12 1981, the first space shuttle launched from Pad 39-A for STS-1, and NASA astronauts John Young and Bob Crippen took the shuttle flight Columbia for two days, landed at Edwards Air Force Base, California.

The launch of a Dragon spacecraft by SpaceX CRS-10 is the first from Pad 39-A after the space shuttle flight ended on July 8, 2011. According to SpaceX, Dragon will take 5500 pounds of supplies to ISS, including Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment (SAGE) III instrument that will ozone in the atmosphere.

Dragon will reach the orbiting lab on Feb 21 Tuesday and French astronaut Thomas Pesquet will fly the spacecraft using the Canadarm2 robotic arm, and NASA astronaut Shane Kimbrough will assist him. The space flyers will also explore the area around while flying.

Though, cargo missions often happen and deliver supplies to ISS, but according to NASA the Dragon is very important as science is its main focus.

There will be enough supply for the astronauts and other operations, so Dragon will have plenty of time for research, said Dan Hartman, deputy manager for the International Space Station (ISS) program, while giving a briefing on Friday on Feb. 17. Dragon will get back to earth after 29 days with 5000 lbs. of supply.

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