CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (WFLA) – NASA has officially set a date for two American astronauts to be launched to the International Space Station from Florida’s Space Coast. It will be the first time astronauts have been launched into space from United States soil since 2011.
NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced Friday the two astronauts – Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley – are set to launch at 4:32 p.m. on May 27 from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center.
Behnken and Hurley will be flying on an American rocket – SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft. The spacecraft will be atop a Falcon 9 rocket.
Behnken and Hurley are headed to the space station for an extended stay as part of the Demo-2 mission. NASA has not set an exact duration for that mission.
NASA officials say the Demo-2 mission is the final major step before Crew Dragon is certified for operational, long-duration missions to the space station.
According to NASA, that certification “lays the groundwork for future exploration of the Moon and Mars starting with the agency’s Artemis program, which will land the first woman and the next man on the lunar surface in 2024.”