The US space agency stated it isn’t a “medical emergency,” nor is it related to COVID-19, but would not elaborate on the issue. Further, the organization refused to disclose which astronaut suffered the unknown affliction and/or issue. This is the first delay of this kind since the Space Shuttle Atlantis mission commander became sick in 1990.
Daily Mail UK reports the launch to the International Space Station (ISS) originally should have occurred last Sunday but was postponed due to weather. Set to happen tomorrow, it once again received a delay upon learning of the “medical issue.” As of now, the launch should commence Saturday (November 6) night at 11:36 Eastern Time, NASA stated.
SpaceX built the Crew Dragon capsule that will rest on top of a Falcon 9 rocket for the mission. As per usual, it will take off from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. Provided everything goes well, the astronauts will arrive at the ISS 22 hours later. While on board, the astronauts will begin a six-month scientific mission.
A similar issue happened in 1990 with astronaut John Creighton. Serving as mission commander, he suffered a sore throat and head congestion close to the Atlantis launch. NASA postponed the launch for three days, just like in this case, and the flight went off without a hitch.
If this mission succeeds, it will be the fifth launch SpaceX achieved since its first in September. For NASA, this will be the fourth time crew members flew to the ISS in the last 17 months.
NASA Looking at New Framework in Search for Alien Life
While fictional sources have always been straightforward with how aliens look and classifying them, real life is hardly that simple. As such, NASA scientists are calling for a new framework in our search for new life.
NASA released a statement about the matter, calling for a new seven-level scale for declaring when we’ve found new life in space. Jim Green, NASA’s chief scientist, went into details about the new scale. “Having a scale like this will help us understand where we are in terms of the search for life in particular locations, and in terms of the capabilities of missions and technologies that help us in that quest.”
Originally, there were only two options regarding alien life: it’s life or it’s not life. This scale helps generate discussion and classify different types of life. Each level measures something different. For instance, the first reports hints of life, while the second ensures the detection wasn’t influenced by our instruments here.
While not official yet, if this scale comes to pass, it would completely change how we classify alien life.