Cape Town, Florida (AP) — The first astronauts launched by Elon Musk’s SpaceX left the International Space Station on Saturday night for the last and most important flight test: The rare splash landed back to earth.
NASA’s Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken bid farewell to the three left behind as their SpaceX Dragon capsule untied and landed on a parachute to the Gulf of Mexico, towards Decline on Sunday afternoon.
Although tropical storm Isaias soared to the Atlantic coast of Florida, NASA said the weather looks favorable on the Pensacola coast across the state.
NASA announces the second spacecraft crew flying to the International Space Station
This will be the first bombing by an astronaut in 45 years. The last time was after the joint US-Soviet mission in 1
When Dragon left Johannesburg, South Africa, 267 miles (430 kilometers), the space station commander Chris Cassidy rang the ship’s bell. Within a few minutes, what the capsule saw was a pair of flashing lights shining on the black blank space.
Hurley broadcasted to the space station: “Two months have passed. We are very grateful for everything you have done as a crew member to help us prove this on the first flight of the Dragon.
Cassidy replied: “Travel safely and land successfully.”
The homing of the astronauts will end a mission that ended a long US launch drought. Since the end of the space shuttle era, the United States has been relying on Russian rockets to transport astronauts to the space station.
When Hurley and Behnken were launched from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center on May 30, SpaceX became the first private company to put personnel into orbit. Now, SpaceX is about to become the first company to take people out of orbit.
Click here for the FOX News App
Bainken said: “The most difficult part is getting us into the water, but the most important thing is getting us home.”
Bainken said that a successful bombing would “fully develop” the launch capabilities of the American crew.
At the farewell ceremony earlier in the day, Cassidy will stay with the two Russians until October and will send Hurley the small American flag left by the astronauts to launch from the US soil to the space station. Hurley was the pilot who completed the last space shuttle mission in July 2011.
The national flag-which also took the first space shuttle flight in 1981-became the company’s first award for launching an astronaut.
SpaceX easily defeated Boeing, which is expected to launch its first crew before next year and land in the southwestern United States. Following this, the flag flew again: in the next few years, NASA’s Artemis plans to send it to the moon.
“We are a little sad to see them go,” Cassidy said, “but I’m very excited about what it means for our international space program to increase this capability of the’commercial crew capsule.” The next SpaceX crew flight is aimed at the end of September.
Hurley and Behnken also brought back a shiny blue and purple dinosaur named Tremor. Their youngest son chose toys to accompany their father on historic tasks.