A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying the company's Crew Dragon spacecraft is launched on Axiom Mission 1 (Ax-1) to the International Space Station with Commander Michael López-Alegría of Spain and the United States, Pilot Larry Connor of the United States, and Mission Specialists Eytan Stibbe of Israel, and Mark Pathy of Canada aboard, Friday, April 8, 2022, at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The Ax-1 mission is the first private astronaut mission to the International Space Station. López-Alegría, Connor, Pathy, Stibbe launched at 11:17 a.m. from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center to begin their 10-day mission. Photo Credit: (NASA/Joel Kowsky)

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carrying the company's Crew Dragon spacecraft is launched on Axiom Mission 1 (Ax-1) to the International Space Station with Commander Michael López-Alegría of Spain and the United States, Pilot Larry Connor of the United States, and Mission Specialists Eytan Stibbe of Israel, and Mark Pathy of Canada aboard, Friday, April 8, 2022, at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The Ax-1 mission is the first private astronaut mission to the International Space Station. López-Alegría, Connor, Pathy, Stibbe launched at 11:17 a.m. from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center to begin their 10-day mission. Photo Credit: (NASA/Joel Kowsky)

Photo by: NASA/Joel Kowsky

NASA/Joel Kowsky

Axiom Lifts Off with the First Fully Private Crewed Mission to Space

By: Discovery

Axiom Mission 1 blasted off from NASA's Kennedy Space Center today, setting the standard for commercial space travel with a first-of-its-kind mission to the International Space Station (ISS).

April 01, 2022

Updated April 8, 2022

NASA, Axiom Space, and SpaceX launched the first all-private crewed flight to the International Space Station (ISS) today at 11:17 a.m. EDT.

Axiom Mission 1 Liftoff
Loading Video...

Here's How it Went

The astronauts walked across the crew access arm, the long white hallway often seen in photographs, and entered the capsule.

The weather was calm as the astronauts underwent leak tests on their spacesuits. The hatch was closed, then opened again, to seal tighter. The AX-1 crew was sealed inside an hour before launch.

The crew access arm was retracted from the Crew Dragon capsule, and the Falcon 9 rocket was loaded with propellants.

15 minutes to launch, the team loaded liquid oxygen and PR-1 rocket fuel into the spacecraft.

Systems started up, and the countdown began.

The Axiom Mission 1 (Ax-1) launched three paying customers with Axiom's Commander Michael López-Alegría to the International Space Station (ISS) aboard a SpaceX Crew Dragon vehicle. The crew is riding atop a Falcon 9 Block 5, from Launch Complex 39A in Florida.

Axiom Space Mission 1

SpaceX is serving as the launch/mission provider with Axiom as the customer. The Ax-1 mission will last 10 days before splashing down back to Earth.

Axiom President and CEO Michael Suffredini told press, "Humanity has only scratched the surface of low-earth orbit’s potential for breakthrough innovation and axiom was founded to push that envelope – first with private astronaut missions to ISS, followed by the launch and operation of the world’s first commercial space station, and eventually the creation of a rotating city in space and scaled human presence in orbit."

The Ax-1 mission team plans to conduct over 25 research projects during their time at the ISS including stem cell and cardiac health, plus in-space spacecraft assembly as Axiom prepares to build the first commercial private space station.

The AX-1 crew has been training at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston Since August 2021 to learn about ISS systems and emergency procedures.

Axiom is planning to launch its first space station module in September 2024. Among the modules that Axiom plans to launch is a research facility to support more science projects once the ISS has retired.

Next Up

NFL SUPER STADIUMS Follows the Epic Journey of Building SoFi Stadium

In partnership with the NFL, Discovery and Science Channel go behind the scenes and follow the remarkable journey of constructing SoFi Stadium in an all-new, two-hour special, NFL SUPER STADIUMS premiering Wednesday, September 9 at 8P on Science Channel and Saturday, September 12 at 11A on Discovery.

25 Years In the Making, the James Webb Telescope Is Coming to Science Channel

The world’s most powerful observatory - the James Webb Space Telescope – is set for launch later this month after more than 25 years of development and construction. Science Channel, the leader of all things space, will take viewers inside this incredible feat of technology and its launch with two specials airing Tuesday, December 21 at 10 PM ET/PT with a Post-Launch Special to air Sunday, December 26 at 10 PM ET/PT.

NASA Launch of SpaceX Capsule to Air Live on Discovery and Science Channel

(Updated) The May 30th launch is set to mark the first launch on US soil with US astronauts in nine years. Watch SPACE LAUNCH LIVE: AMERICA RETURNS TO SPACE on Discovery starting at 2P ET.

Who Wants to Be an Astronaut?

If you've ever wanted to travel into space, this is your chance. No, really. Even you.

Archaeologists Have Discovered Ancient Egyptian Treasures – That are 2,500 Years Old

Archaeologists have unearthed a treasure trove of ancient Egyptian artifacts – dating back 2,500 years – including bronze statues, mummies, and hieroglyphics documents that are rumored to be verses from the Book of the Dead.

UK Records Its Hottest Day Ever Amidst Europe’s Heat Wave

The United Kingdom broke heat records this Tuesday, with the U.K.’s Meteorological Office reporting that temperatures exceeded 104 Fahrenheit (40.2 Celsius) for the first time. With searing heat across Europe and North Africa sparking wildfires throughout the country, Britain declares a national emergency.

When Outer Space Meets Film Noir

Space inspires awe and wonder but it also can be scary… and lethal. Supermassive black holes, deadly gamma-ray bursts, rogue asteroids, dark energy, supernovas… Our world is under attack from above. It’s like a ticking time bomb - and we're ready for takeoff! KILLERS OF THE COSMOS premieres Sunday, September 19 on Science Channel and discovery+.

The Space Titans Are Here

Space travel isn’t just for NASA astronauts now. How did we get here, and what is next in the incredible race to space? SPACE TITANS: MUSK, BEZOS, BRANSON, an all-new special streaming Thursday, November 4 on discovery+, will follow the world’s most successful entrepreneurs who are putting billions of dollars on the line to launch a revolution in space.

New Delhi Fights Air Pollution Before Winter Hits

Before winter hits, a major campaign has started to clean up the air. Authorities warn that the lack of clean air in the city could cause COVID-19 related implications.

NY Nurse First in the US to Receive Pfizer Vaccine

COVID-19 vaccine administration is underway in the United States. Sandra Lindsay, an ICU Nurse at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in Queens, New York, became the first American to get vaccinated in a non-trial setting.

Related To: