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NASA, ESA Name Pilot, Spacecraft Commander for Upcoming SpaceX Crew-7 Mission

Joint ISS mission

NASA, ESA Name Pilot, Spacecraft Commander for Upcoming SpaceX Crew-7 Mission

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration announced that, together with the European Space Agency, it has selected the first two astronauts to launch on the SpaceX Crew-7 mission to the International Space Station. The mission is expected to launch no earlier than 2023 on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, NASA said Thursday.

Selected were NASA astronaut Jasmin Moghbeli and ESA astronaut Andreas Mogensen, who will serve as spacecraft commander and pilot, respectively, for the mission. Two mission specialists will be announced later, following a review with its international partners, NASA said.

This will be the first spaceflight for Moghbeli, who became a NASA astronaut in 2017. Before becoming an astronaut she was an AH-1W Super Cobra pilot and a test pilot for the U.S. Marine Corps.

This will be Mogensen’s second trip to the space station as a veteran of ESA’s 10-day Iriss mission in 2015. He is the first Danish national to go to space.

The SpaceX Crew-7 mission is part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program, which works with the U.S. aerospace industry to provide transportation to and from the ISS. The effort focuses on the use of American-made rockets and spacecraft launching from American soil as a means of further growing the domestic space sector.

In March, NASA announced that it has officially awarded SpaceX the Crew-7, Crew-8 and Crew-9 missions to the ISS, bringing the company’s total Commercial Crew Transportation Capability contract to $3.49 billion.

The original $2.6 billion contract was issued to SpaceX in 2014 for the development of American crewed launch capabilities to replace those previously provided by the Space Shuttle. SpaceX has launched three operational missions to the ISS via its Crew Dragon spacecraft and Falcon 9 rocket since 2020.

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Category: Space