News & Politics

NASA Is Launching a Rocket This Evening, and You Can Watch It From DC

The launch of the S.S. Ellison Onizuka is scheduled for 5:56 PM.

Antares Rocket Launch. Photo courtesy of NASA/Chris Perry.

There’s another rocket launch happening this summer, but there won’t be any billionaires onboard this time. Northrop Grumman’s Antares rocket is scheduled to launch from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia’s Eastern Shore at 5:56 PM on Tuesday. The rocket will transport the S.S. Ellison Onizuka, a NG-16 Cygnus cargo spacecraft named after the first Asian-American selected to be an astronaut, to the International Space Station.

If you want to see the launch, you can head to the NASA Visitor Center at Wallops. Starting at 3 PM, the grounds will be open for 100 vehicles. If you don’t want to make the nearly three-and-a-half-hour drive to Wallops Island, you should be able to see the rocket almost a minute after takeoff in DC. NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Solar System Ambassador Greg Redfern recommends that folks go to an “open area free of trees and buildings” and use binoculars to see the launch. Here’s a map of where it will be visible.

Those that want to see the entire launch from the convenience of their phones or computers can watch a live stream on NASA TV at 5:30 PM.

Damare Baker
Research Editor

Before becoming Research Editor, Damare Baker was an Editorial Fellow and Assistant Editor for Washingtonian. She has previously written for Voice of America and The Hill. She is a graduate of Georgetown University, where she studied international relations, Korean, and journalism.