Crew members set to fly aboard NASA’s SpaceX Crew-8 mission recently visited the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida to rehearse launch day activities and get a close look at the spacecraft that will take them to the International Space Station.
As part of the Crew Equipment Interface Test, NASA astronauts Matthew Dominick, commander; Michael Barratt, pilot; and mission specialist Jeanette Epps, as well as Roscosmos cosmonaut mission specialist Alexander Grebenkin, gathered at SpaceX’s refurbishment facility at nearby Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, put on their flight suits, entered the spacecraft, performed leak checks, and completed communications checkouts.
The crew familiarized themselves with the interior of SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft and listened to the Dragon’s fans and pumps while inside in preparation for sounds they can expect to hear during the flight. Crew-8 will fly to the space station aboard Dragon, named Endeavour, which previously supported NASA’s Demo-2, Crew-2, and Crew-6 missions, as well as Axiom Space’s Axiom Mission 1 to and from the orbiting laboratory.
The Crew-8 astronauts also took a familiarization tour of Kennedy’s Launch Complex 39A, completed emergency training, and rode the elevator to the top of the launch pad’s tower to enjoy the panoramic view of the Florida spaceport. Crew-8 is targeted to launch from the pad on SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket no earlier than mid-February 2024.
As part of the agency’s Commercial Crew Program, Crew-8 marks the ninth human spaceflight mission supported by a SpaceX Dragon spacecraft and the eighth crew rotation mission to the space station since 2020 for NASA.
Follow the commercial crew blog for the latest information on Crew-8 progress and flight readiness as reviews and milestones continue. Details about the mission and NASA’s Commercial Crew Program can be found by following the Crew-8 blog, the commercial crew blog, @commercial_crew on X, and commercial crew on Facebook.