NASA and Space X launch their eighth manned commercial mission to the International Space Station

The eighth manned commercial mission of the POT and SpaceX to the International Space Station (ISS) took off this Sunday from Florida, composed of three Americans and a Russian, after it was launch postponed twice due to strong winds at the takeoff center.

Today, the launch occurred as planned, at 22:53 local time on the US East Coast (3:53 GMT) from the Kennedy Space Centerin central Florida, aboard a ship Dragonthe Endeavorfrom rocket-powered platform 39A Falcon 9.

Aboard the new SpaceX commercial mission Crew-8 NASA astronauts travel Matthew Dominick, Michael Barratt and Jeanette Eppsand the Russian cosmonaut Roscosmos, Alexander Grebenkin.

These flights began in 2020 and have allowed the United States to send astronauts from American soil again after the cancellation in 2011 of the space shuttle program.

Since the last shuttle flight Atlantis into Earth orbit in 2011, NASA had been forced to use only Russian launch systems such as the Soyuz to put its astronauts into orbit.

Today's launch is part of the Commercial Crew Program (CCP, in English), which seeks to make the United States “safe, reliable and cost-effective human transportation” to and from the ISS through a partnership with American private industry.

This is the eighth rotation flight of a new crew, and the ninth human space flight mission on SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft to the ISS for CCP.

If everything goes as planned, it is expected that the astronauts will arrive at the microgravity laboratory the day after their departure.

Like previous missions in the program, the astronauts will remain aboard the ISS for six monthsliving and working as part of what is expected to be for a few days a crew of a total of 11 members.

The current crew of the ISS, seven members of the Expedition 70prepare to receive the Crew-8 quartet, which will dock at the forward port of the module harmony.

The new companions will investigate a multitude of space phenomena to improve the lives of humans living on and off Earth.

They will explore the mechanisms behind the Neurological disorders and ways to prevent fluid changes that occur in astronauts living in space.

They will also analyze how microgravity affects plant growth, and the role of algae in improving spacecraft life support systems.

On the ISS, the new travelers seek to relieve the SpaceX crew members, about seven days after their arrival. Crew-7 Jasmin Moghbeli, Andreas Mogensenof the European Space Agency (ESA), Satoshi Furukawafrom the Japanese JAXAand Konstantin Borisovfrom Roscosmos.

These four members, who have been aboard the space station since last August 27, will disconnect from the spaceport aboard a Dragon spacecraft, the Enduranceon a date not yet established.

The four astronauts are scheduled to make a one-day return trip orbiting Earth before splashing down off the coast of Florida, ending a six-and-a-half month mission in space.

For their part, the four new crew members will return to Earth in six months aboard the Dragon ship, which will also land in one of the landing zones in the ocean off the coast of Florida.

In 2020 SpaceX carried out the Demo-2which was a historic mission that allowed astronauts to be sent from United States soil to the ISS nine years after its space shuttle program was canceled.

In Demo-2, Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley They traveled to the ISS in May 2020 and returned to Earth in the same capsule, which fell into the Gulf of Mexico in a controlled and safe manner that same year.