SpaceX Docked Its ‘Crew Dragon’ Capsule with the Space Station This Weekend

SpaceX Docked Its ‘Crew Dragon’ Capsule with the Space Station This Weekend

At 2:49 a.m. on Saturday, the private company propelled USA human space flight forward with the milestone launch of a Crew Dragon capsule, the first commercially built and operated spacecraft created to transport humans to and from the Internal Space Station.

Nasa experts announced "hard capture complete" in a live webcast of the docking, with applause and cheers audible from the control room. The SpaceX Demo-1 mission is the first uncrewed test flight of NASA's Commercial Crew Program.

While Crew Dragon is created to remain docked to the space station for up to 210 days, this test of the spacecraft will be much shorter, ending early Friday morning. Named after Sigourney Weaver's character in Alien, Ripley will assess and document conditions from within the capsule in preparation for SpaceX's second mission; one which will include NASA astronauts on board, according to SpaceX.

SpaceX engineers and NASA have been working together under a $2.6 billion commerical-crew contract that could potentially be open to general populous space tourists as well.

That successful docking happened on March 3.

"We are not in a space race", he said.

SpaceX team in Hawthorne Calif. March 3 2019
Elon Musk & NASA want to send civilians to the space station

Both the mannequin and the capsule were loaded with a series of sensors which measure noise, vibration and the stress among several other relevant data which play an essential role during the launch and flight towards the International Space Station.

Saint-Jacques tweeted about the experience monitoring Crew Dragon's "first-ever approach and docking" to the space station, hailing it as "the dawn of a new era in human spaceflight!"

Bridenstine said it's only a matter of time before astronauts are being carried into space aboard Dragons or Starliners. NASA is sending Cargo capsules since May of 2012, but they were all berthed meaning- the crew at ISS would use the robotic arm to attach the capsule to ISS docking adapter. The version designed for humans is slightly bigger and safer.

The switch from NASA owning spacecraft to paying private firms for a service was initiated under former president Barack Obama - but due to development delays, has come to fruition under US President Donald Trump. TV cameras on Dragon as well as the station provided stunning views of one another throughout the rendezvous. The crew also installed window covers and checked vales inside the capsule before the official welcoming ceremony.

Expedition 58 crew members enter the SpaceX Crew Dragon for the first time.




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