National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) assigned 2 astronauts to SpaceX crew-4 mission to International Space Station (ISS). This announcement was made on February 13. The astronauts named by NASA for the mission are Kjell Lindgren and Bob Hines. They are to serve as spacecraft commander and pilot respectively for the crew-4 mission. While it is Hines’ first trip to space, Lindgren will be going for the second time, following a 141-day stay at the space station in 2015 for Expeditions 44 and 45. NASA has also named him as one of the Artemis Team of astronauts in Dec 2020, which will help in paving the way for future lunar missions of NASA.
NASA’s Crew Commercial Program is working in collaboration with the American aerospace industry. They plan to develop and operate a new generation of spacecraft. They also plan to launch systems that are capable of carrying crews to the low earth orbit and the space station. The mission is scheduled to launch in 2022 on a Falcon 9 rocket from the Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Centre in Florida.
For over 20 years, humans have resided and worked tirelessly at the International Space Station. They have contributed in advancing scientific knowledge and demonstrating new technologies. This made many research breakthroughs not possible on Earth. 242 people from 19 countries have visited the unique microgravity laboratory as a global initiative. The laboratory has hosted more than 3,000 research and educational investigations from researchers in 108 countries.