Home Local News Next NASA and SpaceX human launch could light up Richmond County night...

Next NASA and SpaceX human launch could light up Richmond County night sky

SpaceX Crew-1 Launch, Nov. 15, 2020.
Image credit: NASA/Aubrey Gemignani

ROCKINGHAM—Richmond County residents may get a glance of the launch of NASA’s third crewed flight of the Crew Dragon Spacecraft  

Update: NASA and SpaceX have pushed the launch to Friday, April 23, at 5:49am.

On Thursday morning at 6:11 a.m., NASA and SpaceX are scheduled to launch four humans aboard the Crew Dragon capsule known as Endeavour, which sits atop of a Falcon 9 rocket booster.

Endeavour and the booster, B1061, are conducting their second flight, both of which flew humans in 2020. Endeavour flew NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken as part of the Crew Demo-2 in May of last year. The booster lifted Dragon capsule Resilience and four humans into space as part of the Crew-1 mission in November.

Wednesday’s launch marks the first time a capsule and booster of any rocket will be reused.

The historic launch has the potential to be seen by those living on the East Coast of the United States.

Weather permitting, Richmond County residents can look to the southern sky around launch time. It may take a few minutes to see what may look like a star streaking across the sky. It could even be possible to see the separation of the first stage booster and the second stage booster.

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While SpaceX and NASA have not shared the flight path, previous flights from Cape Canaveral have blasted northeast, giving a show to residents, or spooking them if they were unaware of what they were looking at.

A previous SpaceX launch for their Starlink satellites made its round on social media, even having some news outlets confused as to what they saw. The rocket created a starburst-like shape in the night sky with a trail following it.

Note: This story was updated to replace “Wednesday” with “Thursday.”

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