Human spaceflight is set to once again begin on American soil with next month's blastoff of the NASA Demo-2 mission, which'll launch a SpaceX Crew Dragon craft from Florida's Kennedy Space Center. NASA has scheduled three press conferences for Friday, May 1, to go over how the entire mission will proceed, and space nerds can watch every minute right here.
The preview is scheduled to begin at 8 a.m. PT with NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine, SpaceX COO Gwynne Shotwell and NASA program managers giving an overview of the mission, which'll see astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley make the first crewed flight of a SpaceX vehicle.
A second news conference, set for at 9:30 a.m. PT, will feature NASA and SpaceX program managers going into more detail about the mission, and the final event, scheduled for 11 a.m. PT, will allow reporters to ask questions of Behnken and Hurley.
Demo-2 is part of NASA's Commercial Crew program, meant to return astronaut launches to the US with the help of private space companies. Since the end of the Space Shuttle program in 2011, the only way to access the International Space Station has been aboard a Russian Soyuz spacecraft. NASA selected the Space Crew Dragon and Boeing Starliner for the program; so far only the Crew Dragon has been certified to carry astronauts.
Though Demo-2 is technically a test mission for Crew Dragon, once it carries the two astronauts to the International Space Station, they'll then join the crew of the ISS. The pair will say in orbit for an undetermined amount of time before riding the Dragon back down to Earth.
We'll have more coverage of Friday's events as they happen, but you can watch live for yourself by returning to this page and streaming our live feed above.