Vice President Mike Pence delivers remarks at the seventh meeting of the National Space Council at NASA headquarters and discusses the launch of Space Force.
The countdown is on Wednesday as SpaceX readies to launch its first private flight and the world's first all-civilian spaceflight.
The Inspiration4 crew, aboard the Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon Resilience spacecraft, is slated to lift off from Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
The crew includes mission commander and billionaire Jared Isaacman, mission pilot Sian Proctor, medical officer Hayley Arceneaux and mission specialist Chris Sembroski.
The orbital flight's five-hour launch window opens at 8:02 p.m. ET, with a backup window for 8:05 p.m. ET on Thursday, Sept. 16.
SPACEX TO MAKE HISTORY WITH ALL-CIVILIAN CREW MISSION, INSPIRATION4
The U.S. Space Force's 45th Weather Squadron has forecast an 80% chance of favorable conditions on Wednesday.
Inspiration4 will last for approximately three days and is targeting an orbit of around 575 kilometers – or nearly 358 miles. It would be the highest that any humans have gone into orbit since the Hubble Space Telescope service technicians.
In another first, SpaceX announced in a Tuesday Q&A that it would be the first time there are three Dragons in orbit.
The Inspiration4 crew will orbit the earth 15 times each day and once every 90 minutes along a customized flight path carefully monitored by SpaceX mission control.
They will conduct experiments designed to expand our knowledge of the universe and of human health during spaceflight.
In addition to advancements in science, Inspiration4 is also looking to raise $200 million to accelerate research advancements and help to save children as well as raise awareness for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. More than $128 million has already been committed to Inspiration4's fundraising campaign.
When the mission is over, the crew will splash down off the coast of Florida.
"I think this is a major milestone in human spaceflight," NASA's Phil McAlister told NBC's "Today" show Wednesday morning.
Earlier this summer, private commercial spaceflight competitors Blue Origin and Virgin Galactic both took passengers up on suborbital flights.
Jeff Bezos' July 20 flight hit 66 miles above the ground and Richard Branson's July 11 flight reached 53 miles.
SpaceX founder Elon Musk has two tourist flights to space coming up in the next year in addition to a private moonshot.
SPACEX'S FIRST ALL-CIVILIAN SPACEFLIGHT LAUNCH DATE SET, WILL ORBIT AROUND EARTH FOR 3 DAYS
FOX Business takes a look at Musk and the other big fish firing up the sector.
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