NASA Weekly ISS Space to Ground Report for 17 April, 2020

NASA astronauts Andrew Morgan Oleg Skripochka and Jessica Meir landed Friday morning near Dzhezkazgan Kazakhstan

NASA astronauts Andrew Morgan Oleg Skripochka and Jessica Meir landed Friday morning near Dzhezkazgan Kazakhstan

NASA announced on Friday that it will carry out its first astronaut mission from US soil in nearly a decade on May 27.

Instead, Mr Skripochka will fly from the Baikonur cosmodrome used to launch missions to the ISS while the Nasa duo will take off in a plane from the steppe city of Kyzlorda after a drive of several hours.

After abandoning the shuttle, NASA turned to private industry to develop its next-generation spacecraft and SpaceX and Boeing have been competing on rolling out a crewed capsule.

Musk, the chief executive officer of Space Exploration Technologies Corp., founded the company in 2002 with the ultimate goal of enabling people to live on other planets, but the company has never flown humans before.

On Friday, NASA had announced that SpaceX, headed by billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk, as part of the "Commercial Crew Program", will launch astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken, on a mission to the International Space Station on May 27 at 4:32 pm (Eastern Time) from the historic Pad 39A of Florida's Kennedy Space Center, which had been used for the Apollo and shuttle missions. Click the link to confirm your subscription and begin receiving our newsletters.

Coronavirus: Canadians stocks hit a 1-year low, down 9.9%
Energy was the worst-performing sector in the S&P 500, tumbling 11.3% as US crude prices fell to their lowest levels in 18 years. ET (1354 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index was down 410.13 points, or 3.23%, at 12,275.08.

The US has been using Russian Soyuz rockets to send astronauts to the ISS since July 2011. At the time, SpaceX said it could transport an astronaut to the Space Station for $20 million compared to $70 million for a trip on Russia's Soyuz spacecraft, reported The Guardian. SpaceX would be the first private company to do so.

The US space agency had been aiming to conduct the crewed mission in May and is sticking with the plan despite the global coronavirus pandemic.

Boeing, SpaceX's competitor, has been developing its Starliner capsule also under NASA's commercial crew program. Hurley served as pilot on that last shuttle mission and will be the spacecraft commander for SpaceX's Dragon crew capsule.

While the astronaut did not refer to the COVID-19 crisis specifically in her online message sent after returning planetside, some netizens were quick to note that for a person who stayed in a space station for so long, enduring the coronavirus lockdown should be easy. Launching without anyone on board, Boeing's Starliner capsule failed to reach the space station after ending up in the wrong orbit and came close to destruction twice because of software errors.

Recommended News

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.