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SpaceX launches 4 astronauts for NASA after private flight

SpaceX launches 4 astronauts for NASA after private flight

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SpaceX launched four astronauts to the International Space Station for NASA on Wednesday, less than two days after completing a flight chartered by millionaires.

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It’s the first NASA crew comprised equally of men and women, including the first Black woman making a long-term spaceflight, Jessica Watkins.

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“This is one of the most diversified, I think, crews that we’ve had in a really, really long time,” NASA’s space operations mission chief Kathy Lueders said on the eve of launch.

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The astronauts were due to arrive at the space station Wednesday night, 16 hours after their predawn liftoff from Kennedy Space Center.

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SpaceX has now launched five crews for NASA and two private trips in just under two years. Elon Musk’s company is having an especially busy few weeks:

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It just finished taking three businessmen to and from the space station as NASA’s first private guests.

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