Ax-1 mission clears flight readiness review
NASA, SpaceX and Axiom Space have completed a day-long flight readiness review meeting today, March 25, for the planned Axiom Mission (Ax-1) to the International Space Station set to launch no earlier than April 3, 2022.
The mission, which will launch on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon spacecraft, will carry four private astronauts to the space station for the first time. It is the first all-private mission to the station in its over 20-year history.
Ax-1 will launch former NASA astronaut Michael López-Alegría and paying passengers Larry Connor, Mark Pathy and Eytan Stibbe. López-Alegría will command the flight.
The space travelers will spend 10 days in space and plan to perform a series of science experiments and studies on the space station while also enjoying the commercial spaceflight experience.
“During the 10-day mission, the crew will spend eight days on the International Space Station conducting scientific research, outreach, and commercial activities,” NASA officials said in a statement.
NASA will hold a press teleconference tonight at 6 p.m. EDT (2200 GMT) to discuss plans for the Ax-1 mission. You can listen in on the mission live here.
Speaking during tonight’s press conference will be:
- Kathryn Lueders, associate administrator, NASA’s Space Operations Mission Directorate
- Dana Weigel, deputy manager, NASA’s International Space Station Program
- Angela Hart, program manager, NASA’s Commercial Low-Earth Orbit Program
- Michael Suffredini, president and CEO, Axiom Space
- Derek Hassmann, operations director, Axiom Space
- William Gerstenmaier, vice president, Build and Flight Reliability, SpaceX