All systems appear to be go for the first Olympic torch spacewalk.
The Sochi Olympic torch will embark on a mission to outer space from Kazakhstan on a Russian Soyuz rocket with Sochi 2014 designs on Wednesday night (Eastern Time). The spacecraft was set on a launch pad on Tuesday, according to RIA Novosti.
The Toshiba Vision screen in New York’s Times Square will also broadcast the stream live Wednesday night.
Russian cosmonauts at the International Space Station will take the torch, without a flame for safety reasons, into open space on Saturday, according to The Associated Press. Video and photos are expected to be taken of the spacewalk.
The Olympic torch flew into space before, in 1996 on the U.S. space shuttle Atlantis for the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, but it has never been taken outside a spacecraft, according to the AP.
The torch is expected to return to Earth on Monday, landing in Kazakhstan.
Missy Franklin broke into tears reading a letter to her parents in a mock press conference in a spot for Minute Maid, one of the four-time Olympic champion’s sponsors since turning professional a year ago.
It was filmed in April near her home in Denver.
Franklin has split time training and competing and working with companies including GoPro, Laureus, Minute Maid, Speedo, United Airlines, Visa and Wheaties.
Franklin has said the sponsor commitments will curtail in the middle of May, when she starts a blackout period to focus on training for the U.S. Olympic Trials, which are June 26-July 3 in Omaha and air on NBC Sports.