NASA commercial cargo provider SpaceX is now targeting its 13th commercial resupply services mission to the International Space Station for no earlier than 11:46 a.m. EST Tuesday, Dec. 12.
Mission coverage will begin on NASA Television and the agency’s website Monday, Dec. 11 with two news briefings.
Packed with almost 4,800 pounds of research, crew supplies and hardware, the SpaceX Dragon spacecraft will launch on a Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
NASA TV mission coverage is as follows:
Monday, Dec. 11
- 11 a.m. – Prelaunch news conference with representatives from NASA’s International Space Station Program, SpaceX, and the 45th Space Wing at Patrick Air Force Base
- 3:30 p.m. – “What’s on Board” science briefing, highlighting research testing: fiber optic filaments, how plants respond to microgravity, the accuracy of a biosensor used for diabetes management, a drug delivery system for combatting muscle atrophy and instruments to measure the Sun’s energy input to Earth and orbital debris.
Tuesday, Dec. 12
- 11:15 a.m. – Launch commentary coverage begins
- 1:15 p.m. – Post-launch news conference with representatives from NASA’s International Space Station Program and SpaceX
Friday, Dec. 15
- 4:30 a.m. – Dragon rendezvous at the space station and capture
- 7 a.m. – Installation coverage
About 10 minutes after launch on Dec. 12, Dragon will reach its preliminary orbit and deploy its solar arrays. A carefully choreographed series of thruster firings are scheduled to bring the spacecraft to rendezvous with the space station. NASA astronauts Mark Vande Hei and Joe Acaba will capture Dragon using the space station’s robotic arm. Ground controllers will then send commands to robotically install the spacecraft on the station’s Harmony module.
The Dragon spacecraft will spend approximately one month attached to the space station, returning to Earth on Jan. 13 with results of previous experiments