CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – NASA and SpaceX announced Tuesday they are pushing back the target launch date for the Crew-4 mission to the end of April.
The upcoming crewed mission to the International Space Station will take place no earlier than 5:26 a.m. ET on Saturday, April 23, NASA said in a tweet.
Launch Update ➡️ @NASA and @SpaceX are now targeting no earlier than 5:26am ET Saturday, April 23, for the #Crew4 mission to the @Space_Station.— NASA Commercial Crew (@Commercial_Crew) April 12, 2022
Learn more: https://t.co/SbJQkN3wZ0 pic.twitter.com/3rlUHF35F1
The launch was previously slated for no earlier than Tuesday, April 19, due to the delay in Axiom’s first all-private crewed mission.
NASA astronauts Jessica Watkins, Robert Hines and Kjell Lindgreen, along with European Space Agency astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti, will launch from Kennedy Space Center in a new Dragon spacecraft atop a Falcon 9 rocket, NASA says.
In case of further delays, NASA also said Sunday, April 24, and Monday, April 25, would act as additional backup dates.
In a training session earlier this month, the crew took part in simulations “focused on undocking and department” from the space station.
“All four astronauts practiced in a high-fidelity simulator of SpaceX’s Dragon capsule, complete with flight-realistic hardware, displays, and seats. Each astronaut gained experience suiting up and configuring the spacecraft for departure,” NASA said.
The agency’s flight readiness review, which focuses on preparing SpaceX’s crew transportation system, the space station, and its international partners, will be held on Friday.
The upcoming launch is set to follow last Friday’s first all-private mission to the space station when SpaceX and Axiom Space sent Michael Lopez-Alegria, Larry Connor, Mark Pathy and Eytan Stibbe up in the sky in a Falcon 9 and Dragon capsule.