NASA and SpaceX have conducted a countdown dress rehearsal of launch day events for the historic Crew Dragon Demo-2 mission. Scheduled for liftoff on May 27, the Demo-2 mission will be the first time American astronauts are launched from US soil in almost a decade.
Demo-2 crew members Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley went through a countdown dress rehearsal of launch day events at the Kennedy Space Center on May 23. The events included every aspect of what the pair will go through on launch day without the propulsive conclusion.
The pair began their day at the Astronaut Crew Quarters inside Kennedy’s Neil A. Armstrong Operations and Checkout Building. After putting on their black and white SpaceX flight suits, they exited the building and climbed into the Tesla Model X astronaut transport vehicle which transported them to the historic Pad 39A.
Once at the pad, the pair took the elevator to the top of the launch tower, walked across the Crew Access Arm, and climbed into their assigned Crew Dragon seats. Finally, the spacecraft’s hatch was closed and the rehearsal was concluded with the go/no-go poll that traditionally occurs 45 minutes before launch.
With the Falcon 9 static fire test completed the day prior (May 22), NASA and SpaceX have cleared what may be the final huddle between now and the launch of Demo-2 on May 27. The weather is now the only thing that potential may stand in the way of an on-time liftoff.
According to the US Air Force 45th Weather Squadron, May 27 has a 40% chance of favourable weather conditions for the launch of the SpaceX Demo-2 mission.
The 45th Weather Squadron will continue to monitor the weather over the next few days. If the May 27 launch day is to be scrubbed due to weather concerns, NASA has not yet indicated if the mission has a backup launch window.