America launches to space; Space X team led by Elon Musk takes off

America launches to space;  Space X team led by Elon Musk takes off

Marissa Altenburg, H/S editor

     On May 30, 2020 at 3:22 p.m. SpaceX made history by launching the first U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station since 2011 on their Launch America mission.

     Since 2008 SpaceX has been crafting up a design for a more sustainable way to space. After all these years and failed attempts they are up and flying.

     Robert Behnken and Doug Hurley were the U.S. astronauts to fly on this momentous trip along the Crew dragon mission. Behnken was the joint operations commander according to Space X’s launch mission page. This means that he was in charge of docking and undocking to the ISS. Hurley was the spacecraft commander, his job was to control things such as “launch, landing, and recovery” according to SpaceX. 

     The rocket launched from the historic launch pad of 39A at the Kennedy space center in Florida. This was the launch pad that Apollo missions were sent from. The historic pad has now sent the second wave of space exploration into orbit. Demo-2’s mission was to test future designs and send astronauts to space and begin work on future missions to get to Mars.

     The SpaceX team caught the eye of NASA when “SpaceX was a winner of a NASA competition for funds to build and demonstrate spacecraft that could potentially service the ISS after the decommissioning of the space shuttle,” says Britannica.

     Junior Tyler Oswinkle says, “ I feel like this is an event that should cause some level of global interest.” Senior Ryan Webb adds, “I feel like there would be a lot more American pride and sense of unity in trying to accomplish a goal like this as a country.”

     So far SpaceX has had a total of 23 launches, 22 visits to the International Space Station, and 9 missions that were reflown. 

     The Space X leader is Elon Musk and his dream to “revolutionize the aerospace industry” according to Space X. One day he hopes to make affordable space flight a reality, says Britannica news. Musk strives to make his ships that are more fuel efficient way to travel along with reusable rockets. 

     “Musk leading the program might be bad as he is somewhat a celebrity. Although he might have honest intentions to further our development outside the earth,” says junior Isabella Silvestri. Oswinkle adds, “I feel like Musk is a genius, but at the same time insane. I don’t really know what he will try next; I do not think anyone can guess.