SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft successfully took off last night from Kennedy Space Center for the International Space Station (ISS), with two NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley. The spacecraft is the first to take the American astronauts to orbit from American soil in nearly a decade. The mission marks the first launch of a rocket owned by SpaceX, the commercial space company founded by Elon Musk. US President Donald Trump was present at the Kennedy Space Center to view the rocket launch.
On Wednesday, the planned launch was called off due to bad weather. NASA has assigned Hurley and Behnken–two of its most experienced astronauts. Behnken is the joint operations commander for the Demo-2 mission, responsible for activities such as rendezvous, docking and undocking, as well as activities while the spacecraft is docked to the space station.
He was selected as a NASA astronaut in 2000 and has completed two space shuttle flights. Hurley is the spacecraft commander for the mission, responsible for activities such as launch, landing and recovery. He was selected as an astronaut in 2000 and has completed two spaceflights.