The next SpaceX cargo mission to the International Space Station under NASA's Commercial Resupply Services contract is scheduled to launch Monday, April 14, from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
The company's Falcon 9 rocket, carrying its Dragon cargo spacecraft, will lift off at approximately 4:58 p.m. EDT. NASA Television coverage of the launch begins at 3:45 p.m. If for any reason the launch is postponed, the next launch opportunity is Friday, April 18 at approximately 3:25 p.m.
The mission, designated SpaceX-3, is the third of 12 SpaceX flights contracted by NASA to resupply the space station. It will be the fourth trip by a Dragon spacecraft to the orbiting laboratory.
The spacecraft will be filled with almost 5,000 pounds of scientific experiments and supplies. The Dragon will remain attached to the space station's Harmony module until mid-May and splash down in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Baja California with more than 3,000 pounds of experiment samples and equipment returning from the station.
NASA will host a prelaunch news conference at 1 p.m., Sunday, April 13, at the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, followed by a SpaceX science and technology cargo news conference at 2 p.m. Both briefings, which are subject to a change in time, will be carried live on NASA TV and the agency's website. A post-launch briefing will be held approximately 90 minutes after launch.
If launch occurs April 14, NASA TV will provide live coverage Wednesday, April 16, of the arrival of the Dragon cargo ship to the International Space Station. Grapple and berthing coverage will begin at 5:45 a.m. with grapple at approximately 7 a.m. Berthing coverage begins at 9:30 a.m.
Date: Apr 4, 2014