HAWTHORNE (CNS) - Hawthorne-based SpaceX is scheduled to launch a re- supply mission to the International Space Station today, after postponing the launch Saturday due to poor weather.
The cargo mission was scheduled to launch aboard a Falcon 9 rocket at 8:39 a.m. PST Saturday from Cape Canaveral in Florida. Due to poor weather in the recovery area, a backup launch window of 8:17 a.m. PST Sunday was activated, the company tweeted Saturday morning.
As usual, SpaceX will attempt to recover the first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket after it propels the Dragon spacecraft carrying the cargo toward the space station. The company will look to land the rocket on its droneship, named “Of Course I Still Love You,'' floating in the Atlantic Ocean. Recovering the rocket will allow it to be reused in future missions, dramatically slashing the cost of launches.
The rocket being used in Sunday's launch has already flown three prior missions, including the historic launch in May of two astronauts to the International Space Station, the first manned launch from American soil since the space shuttle program was retired in 2011.
Last month, SpaceX launched four more astronauts to the space station.
This weekend's launch will be SpaceX's 21st cargo mission to the space station, but it will be the first using an updated version of the Dragon space capsule. According to SpaceX, the revamped capsule can carry 20% more cargo than the previous ship, and it has double the amount of “powered locker cargo capability.''
The redesigned craft is capable of up to five flights to and from the space station, and it can stay docked at the station more than twice as long as the previous version, according to SpaceX.
NASA officials said the capsule will carry a variety of supplies, equipment and other materials, supporting more than 250 science and research investigations.
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