Bermuda’s NASA tracking station played a role in last night’s NASA’s SpaceX Crew-1 mission, with the island briefly mentioned during the live broadcast.
Approximately four hours into NASA’s live broadcast of the launch, the commentator states, “We’ve heard call out Bermuda, that means Bermuda ground station has the signals from the second stage.”
In explaining about the mission, NASA said, “An international crew of astronauts is en route to the International Space Station following a successful launch on the first NASA-certified commercial human spacecraft system in history. NASA’s SpaceX Crew-1 mission lifted off at 7:27 p.m. EST Sunday from Launch Complex 39A at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
“The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket propelled the Crew Dragon spacecraft with NASA astronauts Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover, and Shannon Walker, along with Soichi Noguchi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency [JAXA], into orbit to begin a six-month science mission aboard the space station.
The tracking station is located on Cooper’s Island, and at the ribbon cutting ceremony in 2018, a spokesperson said, “The tracking station will assist NASA in monitoring current and future missions, including the use of launch vehicles, which are designed to deliver satellites and rockets into orbit and supplies to the International Space Station,” a spokesperson explained.
“Bermuda has been a long-time partner with NASA dating back to the Mercury Project and the Apollo lunar program in the 1960s, when Bermuda hosted a radar tracking station that monitored the progress of spacecraft lifting off from Cape Canaveral, Florida, in the same location as the new facility.”
The U.S. Consul said, “Now, as then, Bermuda is helping make possible new advances in space flight and in advancing science, engineering, technology, and math education objectives.
“We are delighted they are here to recognize and further our important U.S.–Bermuda relationship. Historically, Bermuda has formed an important part of NASA’s worldwide network of tracking and data stations.”