NASA astronauts to fly Boeing Starliner in Florida rocket launch: Where to watch on Treasure Coast (2024)

Godspeed, Starliner. Boeing's maiden crewed flightis scheduled next week.

Boeing is preparing to launch itsStarliner capsule on its first crewed mission as soon as 10:34 p.m. EDT Monday, May 6, from Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station. And the Treasure Coast may get a peek at the United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket lifting off into the sky.

On board the rocket will be two NASA astronauts. Flying this commercial crew mission areBarry "Butch" Wilmore and Sunita "Suni" Williams, both Navy test pilots. They have each flown in space twice (more info about them below).

Day or night, watching a rocket launch on the beach issoFlorida. But can you see a rocket launch liftoff from Cape Canaveral all the way in Sebastian, Vero Beach, or even up to Fort Pierce?

Weather permitting and depending on cloud cover, yes. We have suggestions on where and how to watch a rocket launch from Indian River County to Martin County below if you keep scrolling and information on the historic Starliner launch.

What is Boeing's Starliner?

NASA astronauts to fly Boeing Starliner in Florida rocket launch: Where to watch on Treasure Coast (1)

Boeing's Starliner spacecraft will transport NASA astronauts. The company calls it theCrew Space Transportation (CST)-100 Starliner, or simply “Starliner." Set to launch no earlier than May 6, 2024, it will make history as the first spacecraft to ferry humans from Space Launch Complex 41 in Cape Canaveral. The launch pad has been the site for historic missions beginning with the Titan rockets in 1965 and including the New Horizons deep space probe, the Voyager spacecraft, and even the Curiosity Mars rover.

Starliner will be launched with the help of a United Launch Alliance (a partnership between Boeing and Lockheed Martin) Atlas V rocket. The Atlas V rocket has launched from the site since 2002, but this will be the first time it carries astronauts to space.

What launches from where?Years after space shuttle retirement, Florida chases nearly 70 launches a year

Who are the NASA astronauts flying into space for Starliner launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida?

The two NASA astronauts flying this commercial crew mission areBarry "Butch" Wilmore and Sunita "Suni" Williams. Both are Navy test pilots. They have each flown in space twice and both bring a wide variety of experiences to the flight.

Williams was originally a helicopter test pilot before switching to flying jets. She's preparing to fly to space for the third time, as the crew test flight pilot.

This will be Wilmore's third spaceflight as well. Before becoming a NASA astronaut, Wilmore was a U.S. Navy captain, fighter pilot, and test pilot, accumulating more than 8,000 hours of flight time. Wilmore flew the FA-18 Hornet and T-45 Goshawk, playing a role in missions during Operation Desert Storm, Desert Shield and Southern Watch.

Is there a rocket launch in Florida today? Rocket launch calendar for Florida

Here's what we know about the rocket launch missions, mentioned inFLORIDA TODAY's rocket launch calendarfor the month of May, which is updated frequently. (Check that link often for rocket launch times and dates because they are routinely subject to change for a variety of reasons.)

Monday, May 6: NASA’s Boeing Starliner crewed flight test

  • Mission:NASA astronauts Butch Wilmore and Suni Williams will fly aboard a Boeing Starliner spacecraftand a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket to the International Space Station.
  • Launch:10:34 p.m. EDT Monday, May 6, 2024
  • Location:Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station
  • Live coverage:Starts at 6:30 p.m.

Where can I watch Florida rocket launches online?

If you want to watch live rocket launch coverage,FLORIDA TODAY's Space Teamwill provide updates, starting about 90 minutes before launch time. You can download the free app for iPhone or Android or type into your browser.

Where can I see a Florida rocket launch in Indian River County, St. Lucie County and Martin County?

The best views to watch a rocket launch from neighboring Brevard County, aka the Space Coast, is here along the beach. Visibility in Indian River County,St. Lucie Countyand Martin County, part of the Treasure Coast, will depend on weather conditions, and people should make sure not to block traffic or rights of way on bridges and to follow posted rules at beaches. Look due north. Here are some recommended spots, from closest to Cape Canaveral Space Force Station and Kennedy Space Center to farthest:

•Pretty much anywhere in Brevard, you'll get a view of the rocket launch. That includesMelbourne Beach, which borders Indian River County, or from Grant-Valkaria along the Indian River Lagoon.

Sebastian Inlet Park, 9700 S. State Road A1A, Melbourne Beach (there is a cost to enter)

Wabasso Beach Park, 1808 Wabasso Beach Road, Wabasso

Ambersands Beach Park, 12566 N. SR A1A, Vero Beach (free parking)

South Beach Park, 1700 Ocean Drive, Vero Beach (free parking)

Merrill Barber BridgeinVero Beach

Alma Lee Loy BridgeinVero Beach

Fort Pierce Inlet, 905 Shorewinds Drive

Blind Creek BeachsideNorth and South, South Ocean Drive or SR A1A on Hutchinson Island in Fort Pierce

Blue Heron Beach, 2101 Blue Heron Blvd., Fort Pierce

Frederick Douglass Memorial Park, 3600 S. Ocean Drive, Fort Pierce

Dollman Park Beachside, 9200 South Ocean Drive, Jensen Beach

Herman's Bay Beach, 7880 South Ocean Drive, Jensen Beach

John Brooks Park Beachside, 3300 S Ocean Drive, Fort Pierce

Middle Cove Beach, 4600 South Ocean Drive, Fort Pierce

Normandy Beachin Jensen Beach

Pepper Park Beachside, 3302 N. SR A1A, Fort Pierce

Walton Rocks Beach, which has a dog park, 6700 South Ocean Drive, Jensen Beach

Waveland Beach, 10350 S. Ocean Drive, Jensen Beach

House of Refuge and beach, 301 S.E. MacArthur Blvd., Stuart

State Road A1A causeway in Stuart

Rick Nealeis a Space Reporter at FLORIDA TODAY (for more of his stories,click here.) Contact Neale at 321-242-3638 Twitter/X:@RickNeale1

NASA astronauts to fly Boeing Starliner in Florida rocket launch: Where to watch on Treasure Coast (2024)


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