SpaceX Crew-1 mission splashes down with four astronauts after record mission for NASA

SpaceX Crew-1 mission splashes down with four astronauts after record mission for NASA [ad_1]

In this NASA handout, Support groups work across the SpaceX Crew Dragon Resilience spacecraft shortly after it landed with NASA astronauts Mike Hopkins, Shannon Walker, and Victor Glover, and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) astronaut Soichi Noguchi aboard within the Gulf of Mexico on Sunday, May 2, 2021, off the coast of Panama City, Florida.

Bill Ingalls | NASA | Getty Images

The four astronauts aboard SpaceX’s Crew Dragon capsule “Resilience” safely returned to Earth on Sunday, splashing down in parachutes touchdown within the Gulf of Mexico after a record-setting mission to the International Space Station.

The astronauts spent greater than 5 months in house for the Crew-1 mission, the longest-ever period for a crew launched in an American-built spacecraft.

SpaceX mission management welcomed the astronauts with some humor after they touched down: “We welcome you back to planet Earth and thanks for flying SpaceX. For those of you enrolled in our frequent flyer program, you’ve earned 68 million miles on this voyage.”

“SpaceX, ‘Resilience’ is back on planet Earth, and we’ll take those miles – are they transferable?” NASA astronaut and spacecraft commander Mike Hopkins joked moments after touchdown.

NASA astronauts Hopkins, Shannon Walker, and Victor Glover and Japan’s Soichi Noguchi reached the house station through the Dragon capsule after launching within the capsule on high of a Falcon 9 rocket final November.

From left: NASA astronauts Shannon Walker, Victor Glover, and Mike Hopkins, and JAXA astronauts Soichi Noguchi inside SpaceX’s Crew Dragon capsule ‘Resilience’ after splashdown on May 2, 2021.

Bill Ingalls / NASA

After undocking from the house station at 8:35 p.m. EDT on Saturday, the astronauts traveled by way of the ambiance and touched down within the Gulf of Mexico close to Panama City, Florida, through parachutes at about 2:57 a.m. EDT on Sunday. They exited the SpaceX spacecraft lower than an hour after touchdown.

Weather circumstances have been reported to be close to excellent, with little wind and a relaxed sea. “It really could not have been a more flawless journey home,” NASA public affairs officer Leah Cheshier stated.

The touchdown was the primary crewed and U.S.-made spacecraft splashdown amid darkness since 1968, and the second time an area capsule has ever landed within the Gulf of Mexico. It’s additionally solely the second time NASA and SpaceX have introduced astronauts again to Earth on a Crew Dragon spacecraft.

The second operational SpaceX crew mission arrived on the International Space Station early on the morning of April 24, carrying four astronauts for the subsequent six-month keep in house.

SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft ‘Endeavour,’ which launched on a Falcon 9 rocket the day before, docked with the ISS at 5:22 a.m. EDT. The capsule carried a global cadre of astronauts: NASA’s Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur, JAXA’s Akihiko Hoshide and ESA’s Thomas Pesquet.

At that point, the Crew-2 mission quickly introduced the full variety of astronauts on board the orbiting analysis laboratory to 11. SpaceX, based and led by CEO Elon Musk, has now sent 10 astronauts to space in under a year.

SpaceX developed its Crew Dragon spacecraft and fine-tuned its Falcon 9 rocket beneath NASA’s Commercial Crew program, which supplied the corporate with $3.1 billion to develop the system and launch six operational missions.

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