The SpaceX Crew Dragon Demo-1 mission was launched from Kennedy Space Center's Launch Complex 39A aboard a Falcon 9 on Saturday, 2 March.
NASA has relied on Russian Federation to ferry its astronauts to the space station since the end of the United States space shuttle program in 2011 after a 30-year run. As CNN famous, there was additionally a danger that it might harm the ISS. On March 8, Crew Dragon will detach from the ISS to splash down in the Pacific Ocean. NASA now depends entirely on Russian Soyuz rockets and spacecraft to transport its astronauts to and from the ISS.
The SpaceX team in Hawthorne, Calif., watches as the SpaceX Crew Dragon docks with the International Space Station's Harmony module, on March 3, 2019. The round-trip to the International Space Station is created to provide data on the performance of the company's Falcon 9 rocket, Crew Dragon spacecraft, and other systems and operations that NASA will evaluate, as part of the process to certify SpaceX to carry astronauts to and from the space station.
Elon Musk has just launched "Crew Dragon" on the Falcon 9 rocket headed for the International Space Station. The test dummy - or Smarty as SpaceX likes to call it, given all the instrumentation - is named Ripley after the lead character in the science-fiction "Alien" films. Engineers will be carefully watching sound, vibration and other stresses on the spacecraft, while monitoring the life-support, communication and propulsion systems.
If the spacecraft's descent proceeds in a normal regime, it will travel to the orbital outpost with NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley on its board in July. Docking Adapter will act like parking spots for further capsules going into the Earth's orbit. Boeing is looking to launch its Starliner capsule without a crew as early as April and with a crew possibly in August.
As many as seven astronauts could squeeze in, although four will be the norm once flights get going, allowing for a little cargo room. It used its computers and sensors to guide itself to the station.
Reuters reported on February 21 that SpaceX and Boeing both must address significant design and safety concerns before they can fly humans.
It can carry as many as seven people and has three windows, emergency-abort engines that can pull the capsule to safety, and streamlined controls, with just 30 buttons and touch screens, compared with the space shuttle cockpit's 2,000 switches and circuit breakers.
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