Nasa launched 4 of their astronauts off to the International Space Station from Cape Canaveral early today, marking NASA’s first-ever launch with a reused SpaceX rocket and capsule.
After a day’s delay due to bad weather, the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and the Endeavour Crew Dragon module lifted off at 5:49 am as planned.
“Endeavour launches once again four astronauts from three countries to the one and only International Space Station,”
said a voice from NASA Mission Control.
This is the first time that NASA has sent humans into space via a reused rocket and capsule. The rocket boosted the Crew-1 flight in November 2020, while the Endeavour Crew Dragon capsule flew during the Demo-2 mission in May 2020.
Reusability is key to SpaceX’s strategy of keeping costs down while maintaining a rapid pace of launches for both NASA and its commercial clients, according to Benji Reed, SpaceX’s senior director for human spaceflight.
“The Holy Grail of spaceflight is reusability,” Reed told reporters during a teleconference earlier this week.
“We’re continuing our work together as a team to assess how many more flights we’d be able to reuse.”