SpaceX is launching a Dragon spacecraft using a Falcon 9 rocket on Monday, with a launch window set for 12:31 PM EDT (9:31 PM PDT). The mission is CRS-12, the twelfth commercial resupply mission conducted by SpaceX, which is set to deliver a payload of over 6,400 pounds of supplies and experimental support materials to the International Space Station.
The launch’s payload includes a new supercomputer from Hewlett Packard Enterprises, which will test whether so-called ‘software hardening’ can be used to make a stock supercomputer from Earth suitable for use in space during long durations – including over the course of a potential mission to Mars.
This Dragon capsule will carry more materials for science and experiments than have previous resupply missions form SpaceX, with 75 percent of the capsule’s weight assigned to supplies for over 250 experiments including testing things like the genetic causes of Parkinson’s disease, radiation’s effect on roundworm and more, extending the shelf life of pharmaceuticals and more.
SpaceX will be launching from its LC-39A launch facility at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, and today’s launch will include attempting to land and recover the Falcon 9’s fist stage at LZ-1 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. The Dragon capsule used will return to earth after around one month in orbit, carrying 3,000 pounds of goods from the ISS for the return flight.
The live stream above should go live around 15 minutes prior to the opening of the launch window, so at around 12:16 PM EDT (9:16 AM PDT).