May 27, 2020 - Science

SpaceX, NASA postpone crewed launch due to weather

Sunrise on launch day with the Falcon 9 rocket in the distance.

The Falcon 9 rocket at sunrise in Florida, May 27. Photo: NASA/Joel Kowsky

SpaceX and NASA have postponed the company's first crewed flight from Cape Canaveral because of bad weather. The next launch opportunity could be as soon as Saturday.

Why it matters: If successful, the launch will be the first time a private company has sent people to orbit and the first crewed launch from the U.S. since the end of the space shuttle program in 2011.

The call to scrub the launch came down to the wire, at about 17 minutes to launch, with astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken already loaded into the capsule and fueling of the rocket underway.

Details: Weather was always going to be a limiting factor for this launch.

  • The Crew Dragon comes equipped with an abort system that will propel the capsule away from a failing rocket, allowing it to splash down in the ocean and keeping the astronauts safe.
  • NASA and SpaceX, therefore, have to keep an eye on the weather and sea states down range as well as the weather around the launch site.
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