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TWIRL 36: Crew-3 Dragon set to take astronauts to ISS

A mockup of the Crew 3 Dragon docking at the ISS
Background image via NASA Kennedy

In the upcoming week, we are due to see two launches to the International Space Station, which is a tiny bit unusual. The first mission to the ISS will come from Russia and this will just be a cargo mission but the second and more interesting launch will come from SpaceX which is launching Crew-3 Dragon with several astronauts aboard.

Monday, October 25

The first launch of the week is ExPace’s Kuaizhou KZ-1A rocket which is launching the Jilin Gaofen 2F satellite. This launch was mentioned in the last edition of TWIRL but the October 22 launch was scrubbed and rescheduled for October 25. The new satellite will join the Jilin 1 Earth observation constellation and snap full-colour resolution images better than 0.76 metres over an area of 40 km.

Tuesday, October 26

The second launch of the week will be a Japanese H-IIA (H-2A) rocket with the designation F44. It will be carrying a navigation satellite called QZS 1R into a geosynchronous orbit for the Japanese space agency, JAXA. The mission is due for launch around 2:00 a.m. UTC and will be livestreamed on YouTube for those who want to watch.

Thursday, October 28

At midnight UTC on October 28, the Russian space agency, Roscosmos, will launch a Soyuz 2.1a rocket to the International Space Station carrying the 79th Progress cargo delivery. The cargo aboard will include propellant and pressurised gases, food, water and other equipment. All this cargo will weigh 2,550 kg. The event should be streamed on YouTube, but if not, check out next week’s TWIRL recap for footage.

Sunday, October 31

The final launch and most exciting launch of the week is from SpaceX. A Falcon 9 rocket will carry the Crew-3 Dragon capsule up to space where it will head to the International Space Station. This mission will be carrying NASA’s Raja Chari, Tom Marshburn and Kayla Barron as well as ESA’s Matthias Maurer. The launch is scheduled for 6:21 a.m. UTC and should be available on SpaceX’s YouTube channel.


In the last week, actress Yulia Peresild and film director Klim Shipenko returned to Earth. In the video below you can see them saying goodbye to those aboard the ISS.

Below you can see their craft land back on Earth and their exit onto land.

South Korea’s Nuri test flight also took place on Thursday, you can see footage of that below.

Two more launches are scheduled for Sunday, October 24. This post will be updated when footage of those become available.

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