Four astronauts have launched from the NASA spaceport at Cape Canaveral towards the ISS (International Space Station). Propelled by a Falcon-9 rocket, the team consists of the US-American Jasmin Moghbeli, Danish ESA astronaut Andreas Mogensen, Japanese astronaut Satoshi Furukawa, and Russian Konstantin Borisov aboard the SpaceX capsule named Dragon. After nearly 24 hours, it is expected to dock at the outpost of humanity around 400 kilometers above Earth.
There, the capsule is supposed to return another four-member crew from the ISS to Earth a few days later. "Crew 6" comprises US-Americans Stephen Bowen and Warren Hoburg, Russian Andrej Fedjajew, and Emirati Sultan al-Nijadi. In total, there are currently seven individuals on the International Space Station.
The mission referred to as "Crew-7," according to the US space agency NASA, marks the eighth manned flight of SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft, owned by the billionaire Elon Musk. Furthermore, it's the seventh crew rotation on the ISS since 2020. The new crew members are expected to conduct research in space for six months.
The originally scheduled launch for Friday had been postponed by a day. The agency did not provide a reason for the delay. The new launch date offers the teams "additional time to complete and review analyses," SpaceX stated on Friday. Since the start of the Russian offensive in Ukraine a year ago, the International Space Station has been one of the few areas where Russia and the USA continue to collaborate. The ISS has been in operation since 1998.