NASA and SpaceX’s Crew-7 mission successfully lifted off early Saturday morning, for the first time with a diverse international crew to replace Crew-6.
Astronaut relay on the International Space Station. NASA and SpaceX’s Crew-7 mission successfully lifted off early Saturday morning, for the first time with a diverse international crew to replace Crew-6.
On board are astronauts Jasmin Moghbeli from NASA, Andreas Mogensen from ESA, Satoshi Furukawa from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency and Konstantin Borisov from Roscosmos.
Ahead of them is a six-month mission of scientific research and station maintenance.
This is the first American launch in which each seat on the spacecraft is occupied by a different country: until now, NASA has always included two or three of their own on its SpaceX taxi flights.
“SpaceX, thank you for the trip. It’s been amazing,” Crew 7 Commander Jasmin Moghbeli told SpaceX launch control. “We may have four crew members on board from four different nations, Denmark, Japan, Russia and the United States, but we are a united team with a common mission.”
“It’s really an exciting time. And of course, also on behalf of ESA, I would like to congratulate all our partners […] for having achieved this milestone and this wonderful launch,” said ESA Director General Josef Aschbacher.
The docking of the Endurance spacecraft and the departure of the astronauts will take place on Sunday. The return to Earth of the previous crew will take place about five days later.
Another NASA astronaut will be launched to the station from Kazakhstan in mid-September.