On Saturday, SpaceX and Inspiration4 both shared images of the crew signing their booster, after arriving for another week of training. The new tradition was started by the members of NASA’s Crew-2 mission, the first crew to fly on a flight-proven booster.
Inspiration4 crew in Florida to continue training
Over the past few months, Jared Issacman and the three other crew members of Inspiration4 have been training across the US for their trip to space. While Virgin Galactic and Blue Origin offer short training prior to their customers’ flights, SpaceX and the Inspiration4 team have spent months training every member of the team.
The whole Inspiration4 team is receiving flight training for their Dragon Spacecraft by SpaceX. While the spaceflight will be entirely automated, they must learn what to do in the event of an emergency. Jared Issacman and Dr. Sian Proctor will be the flight’s commander and pilot respectively, both have previous flight experience. Along with pilot training, training for the flight includes training in orbital mechanics, zero and high g training, and emergency training.
This week the Inspiration4 team was in Florida for a continuation of their training. Training this past week included safety training at LC-39a, as well as egress and water survival training with the Dragon Capsule. While this week was certainly a busy one between training and meetings, the crew also spent time with their families and took two ‘orbits’ around the world at Epcot. This coming week will be packed with more training, including a 30-hour long simulation and time in fighter jets.
Signing the Falcon 9 booster
Something that started with Crew 2, the first crewed flight on a reflown booster, the Inspirstion4 team signed their booster. While the booster Inspiration4 will use is unconfirmed, it’s a dirty one. The photos showed a large amount of soot/scorching on the side of the booster. One possibility for the booster would be B1061, which previously flew NASA’s Crew-1 and Crew-2 missions. That booster has flown 3 times, proving its ability to safely fly to space.
Inspiration4 crew signing their booster at SpaceX’s Kennedy Space Center facility. Credit: Inspiration4/John Kraus
With the cupola installed on Dragon Capsule Resilience at KSC, progress is moving quickly toward the launch of Inspiration4 in September of this year. This flight will be the next crewed launch from the US into orbit and marks the first orbital crewed mission not visiting a space station since the last Hubble Space Telescope servicing mission by Space Shuttle Atlantis in 2009. For now, the Inspiration4 crew continues their flight training before their launch.
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