SpaceX will bring astronauts from the US, Russia and UAE to the space station

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Cape Canaveral, Fla. (AP) On Thursday, SpaceX delivered four astronauts to NASA’s International Space Station. Among them was the first person to rise from the Arab world for an extended stay of several months.

The Falcon rocket launched from Kennedy Space Center just after midnight, soaring over the East Coast and lighting up the night sky.

His nearly 80 spectators in the United Arab Emirates launch astronaut Sultan Al Neyadi, his second astronaut in the Emirates, to take off on his six-month mission I was watching from the field.

On the other side of the world, in Dubai and elsewhere in the United Arab Emirates, schools and offices are broadcasting the launch live. And about the Dragon capsule, which is scheduled to arrive at the space station on Friday:
Steven Bowen, a former NASA submarine pilot who has completed his three flights on his Space Shuttle; Warren “Woody” Horberg, a former research scientist and space novice at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Andrei, a space novice who has withdrawn from Russia; of the Fedjayev Air Force.


At the last minute on Monday, the first start attempt was aborted because the filter in the engine ignition system was clogged.

“It may have taken us twice, but it was worth the trip,” Bowen said.

Cassie Lueders, NASA’s mission director for space operations, said Thursday’s launch enhanced the night sky, which already shows the conjunction of Venus and Jupiter. The two planets have been appearing side by side for the whole week and seem to be getting closer and closer. “Tonight we added a bright new star to this night sky,” she told reporters.

The newcomers to the space station will replace American, Russian and Japanese crew members who have been there since October. The other station residents, two Russians and one American, doubled their six-month stay to September after the Soyuz capsule leaked.A replacement Soyuz arrived last weekend. .

Communications Technician Al Neyadi thanked everyone in Arabic and then in English once they arrived in orbit. “It was a great start, amazing,” he said.

He replaced Hazza He Al Mansouri, the first Emirati cosmonaut to fly to the space station on a Russian rocket for his one-week stay in 2019. The Oil Rich Association paid for Al Nayyadi’s seat on SpaceX’s flight.

The United Arab Emirates’ Minister of Public Education and Advanced Technology Salah Al-Amiri said the long-term mission “provides new spaces for science and scientific discovery in the country.”

Salem al-Marri, Executive Director of the UAE Space Center in Dubai, said: Emirates already has a spacecraft orbiting Mars, and a Mini-Rover is hitchhiking to the Moon along with a Japanese lander. Two of his new UAE astronauts will train in Houston with his newest NASA astronaut candidate.

Saudi Prince Sultan bin Salman was the first Arab to go into space aboard his shuttle Discovery in 1985. Two years later, he was followed by Syrian cosmonaut Muhammad Faris, who launched from Russia. Both were in space for about a week. He has many appointments with his crew, especially during Ramadan, the holy month of Islam, which begins this month. Regarding Ramadan observance in orbit, he said fasting is not mandatory as it could make him weaker and jeopardize his mission.

Crew leader Bowen said the four worked well as a team despite their national differences. Despite tensions over the war in Ukraine, the US and Russia continue to work on the space station, swapping seats for travel there.