SpaceX Dragon capsule docks delivering NASA astronauts to International Space Station

01 Juin, 2020, 15:22 | Auteur: Therese Cote
  • SpaceX's Dragon capsule docks at International Space Station

It is the same launch pad, that was used during the Apollo mission to the moon a half-century ago.

NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken reported that the capsule was performing beautifully, as they closed in for the docking. The mission was initially supposed to be launched on May 27 but was delayed due to poor weather conditions at the last minute.

NASA has always relied on commercial contractors for its space missions, but this is the first time that a commercial company has been exclusively responsible for the design, development, manufacture, launch, and recovery of NASA astronauts.

The launch was the first for NASA's Commercial Crew Program, where SpaceX and eventually Boeing will launch astronauts from the United States under a NASA contract. President Donald Trump and Vice President Michael Pence were present to witness the historic launch.

NASA has yet to decide how long Hurley and Behnken will spend at the space station, somewhere between one and four months. Tremor was going to join Earthy, a plush globe delivered on last year's test flight of a crew-less crew Dragon.

The astronauts have named the commercial spacecraft after one of the retired winged orbiters - "Endeavour".

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Behnken and Hurley will perform tests on Crew Dragon in addition to conducting research and other tasks with the space station crew.

A pair of U.S. astronauts - Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley - launched into space for the first time in almost a decade on Saturday, May 30th aboard SpaceX's Crew Dragon spacecraft. SpaceX's launch of Hurley and Behnken ends a almost decade-long reliance on Russian Federation for access to the station.

"Doug and I will be able to take some burden of Chris and his crew mates Ivan and Anatoli so that we can keep the space station operating at a peak possibility".

Hurley explained that there are two reasons behind choosing the name Endeavour.

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