CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) and NASA have announced 12:22 p.m. EST as the time when the launch window for the second demonstration flight of the Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) will open. The launch is currently scheduled to take place on April 30 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station’s Space Launch Complex-40 (SLC-40) located in Florida.
SpaceX will utilize the company’s Falcon 9 rocket to launch the second of its Dragon spacecraft in an attempt to both rendezvous with and be berthed to the International Space Station (ISS). SpaceX will work to test out a number of the spacecraft’s vital systems during this flight in preparation for regular resupply flights to the orbiting laboratory.
This flight will actually combine the objectives of the second and third demonstration flights – into one. Under the $1.6 billion COTS contract that SpaceX has with NASA the company needs to fly three demonstration flights and nine resupply flights to the space station. The company requested and received approval from NASA to combine the two remaining demonstration flights into one.Missions » ISS »