SpaceX may be busy launching missions back-to-back, but it is also pursuing another line of business. The space exploration company has re-scheduled the Polaris Dawn mission, which will include the first-ever commercial spacewalk, for March 2023.
The private mission was slated for late 2022 but will now occur next year, according to an update on the mission’s website, as spotted by Space.com.
SpaceX plans to launch Polaris Dawn using a Falcon 9 rocket. The rocket will take off from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The astronauts will ride in a Dragon capsule to orbit.
Polaris Dawn includes a spacewalk at an altitude of 435 miles or 700 km. It is higher than spacewalks from the International Space Station orbiting at about 250 miles or 400 km. The mission will also “conduct research with the aim of better understanding the effects of spaceflight and space radiation on human health.”
The private space mission is being led by Jared Isaacman, the billionaire funder who purchased three separate SpaceX mission, and who has already led the Inspiration4 mission last year. As with the first mission, Polaris Dawn will try to raise funds for St Jude Children Hospital after raising nearly $200 million last year.