BAD WEATHER DELAYS SPACEX, NASA MISSION LAUNCH
SpaceX's landmark launch to the International Space Station (ISS) -- the first crewed mission to blast off from US soil since 2011 -- was scrubbed on Wednesday (Thursday in Manila, May 28, 2020) due to fears of a lightning strike, the Agence France Presse (AFP) reported.
With NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley strapped into the Crew Dragon capsule, the launch pad platform retracted and rocket fueling underway, SpaceX made the call to abort. "Unfortunately, we are not going to launch today," launch director Mike Taylor said, with about 17 minutes to go until takeoff. "We had just simply too much electricity in the atmosphere," NASA chief Jim Bridenstine added.
The mission comes despite shutdowns caused by the coronavirus pandemic, with the crew in quarantine for the past two weeks.
President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump had arrived in Florida to watch, but headed back to the White House once the launch was called off.