Manawatu Standard

Spacex gets approval for third manned launch


Spacex is gearing up for its third astronaut launch in under a year, after getting the green light from Nasa a week ahead of next Friday’s planned flight. Managers from Nasa and Elon Musk’s space company yesterday cleared the Falcon rocket and Dragon capsule for a dawn liftoff with a crewof four to the Internatio­nal Space Station. They will spend six months at the orbiting lab, replacing another Spacex crewthat’s close to coming home. This will be the first crewflight using a recycled Falcon and Dragon. Both were designed for reuse. The rocketwas used to launch the current station crewlast November from Nasa’s Kennedy Space Centre. The capsule, dubbed Endeavour, also will be making a repeat performanc­e; it carried two test pilots to the space station on Spacex’s first crewflight last northern spring.

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