Two NASA astronauts, a Russian cosmonaut, and an Emirati, were set to blast off in the Falcon 9 from Florida’s Kennedy Space Center in the SpaceX Dragon Crew-6 mission at 1.45 am (6.45 am GMT).
SpaceX announced that it had started draining the rocket’s fuel and that the crew would soon be exiting.
Stephen Bowen and Warren Hoburg, both of NASA, Russia’s Andrey Fedyaev, and the United Arab Emirates’ Sultan al-Neyadi, would stay aboard the space station for six months.
Neyadi, 41, will become the fourth Arab and second UAE astronaut to go to space.
The next expedition is a “huge honor,” as Neyadi put it.
Also making their first trips into space is the pilot for the Endeavour, Hoburg, and a Russian mission expert, Fedyaev.
The Russian cosmonaut Fedyaev became the second person to ride a SpaceX rocket to the International Space Station.
The Russian Soyuz spacecraft is often used to transport NASA astronauts to the station.
Moscow and Washington’s relationship has been tense since Russia’s incursion in Ukraine, although the two countries have sometimes worked together in the realm of space. Despite the tense situation, such communication has persisted.
Bowen has been to space three times aboard the shuttle and indicated that political discussions are uncommon in orbit.
Many studies, including how materials burn in microgravity and examining the performance of the heart, brain, and cartilage, will be carried out by Crew-6 during their time on the ISS.
For the sixth time, a SpaceX rocket has delivered a crew to the ISS. On three separate occasions, the Endeavour spacecraft has been launched into orbit.
About every six months, NASA pays SpaceX to bring personnel to the ISS.