April 19, 2019

Astronomy Video of the Week: Chasing the Dragon- Watch the CRS-6 Launch Live!

The launch of CRS-5 in January 2015. (Credit: NASA/SpaceX).

Watching space launches can be an addicting pastime. We’ve got just such a chance for a ‘fix’ today, when SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket lights up the sky over the Florida Space Coast this afternoon with the CRS-6 mission headed to the International Space Station.

Not only will the CRS-6 mission send 4,300 pounds of cargo to the ISS, but SpaceX will once again attempt to land the Falcon stage one booster on its floating autonomous drone ship after launch.

Launch is set for 4:33 PM EDT/20:33 Universal Time, and NASA TV is set to go live about 63 minutes prior:

Broadcast live streaming video on Ustream

Weather looks fine for launch along the Florida Space Coast, with a 60% chance in favor of launch. In the event of a scrub, the launch will slip back to Tuesday at 4:10 PM EDT/ 20:10 UT, though weather on Tuesday is much less favorable.

And to cap it off, there’ll be lots of chances to track down the Dragon capsule and associated hardware as it stalks the International Space Station in orbit. Grapple and berthing for the Dragon spacecraft is set for Wednesday morning April 15th at 7:14 AM/11:14 UT.

Among the cargo headed to the ISS aboard Dragon are items that vanished with the failed Antares/Cygnus launch last year, including Planetary Resources Arkyd-3 Reflight and ISSpresso. Designed by Lavazza, this is the first Espresso coffee maker in space. Hey, where humans go, civilization and good coffee follows… I guess that a coffee press probably doesn’t work so well in zero gravity.

Don’t miss today’s Space Coast rocket launch!

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