For the first time in nearly a decade, astronauts will launch into space from the United States. The launch is a milestone for SpaceX, which designed the capsule as part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program. The program encourages private companies to create new spacecraft capable of carrying astronauts to the International Space Station.
SpaceX’s capsule, which will be launched with the help of the Falcon 9 rocket, is called the Crew Dragon, and its two passengers are veteran NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley. The Falcon 9 rocket was supposed to take off from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on May 27, but was postponed to Saturday, May 30, due to stormy weather. The astronauts were strapped in and ready for the ride until 15 minutes before the scheduled launch when it became clear the bad weather was here to stay.