Just before the important SpaceX launch where the manned crew is set to dock on the International Space Station, boss Elon Musk revealed he tested positive for COVID-19. The launch was delayed from the original time on Saturday due to weather, but Musk explained that he'd taken four separate COVID-19 tests in the previous day and received two positive results. The Tesla and SpaceX figurehead explained that he also had two negative tests, speaking about his own experiences while dealing with the issues of coronavirus testing in the United States.
"Something extremely bogus is going on," Musk tweeted Friday. "Was tested for covid four times today. Two tests came back negative, two came back positive. Same machine, same test, same nurse. Rapid antigen test from BD."
Something extremely bogus is going on. Was tested for covid four times today. Two tests came back negative, two came back positive. Same machine, same test, same nurse. Rapid antigen test from BD.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 13, 2020
Musk said some symptoms he exhibited included sniffles, a cough, and a "slight fever."
Even though two negative tests were involved, NASA chief Jim Bridenstine is recommending Musk quarantine during the Sunday launch. NASA deputy flight operations manager Norm Knight said the four astronauts involved in Sunday's launch are "almost certainly" not at risk.
"It's restricted access," he said. "It doesn't matter if you're Elon Musk or Jim Bridenstine... if any [of NASA's Covid-19 protocols] have been compromised, then we're not going to let you near the crew. And again, it's to protect the overall mission."
The launch is currently scheduled for 7:27 p.m. Eastern on Sunday. Here's what you need to know for how to watch the SpaceX Crew Dragon launch:
- What: NASA launches 4 astronauts aboard a SpaceX Crew Dragon on a mission to the International Space Station
- Date: Sunday, November 15, 2020
- Time: Live coverage begins at 3:30 pm EST
- Launch targeted for 7:27 pm EST
- Location: Kennedy Space Center, Florida
- Online stream: Live on CBSN in the player above and on your mobile or streaming device.
- Liftoff from historic pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center is targeted for 7:27 pm EST Monday, just a few minutes after the space station passes 260 miles overhead.
Cover photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images