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Four Crew Dragon astronauts go home from the space station

The four astronauts on the International Space Station have prepared their SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule for unloading on Saturday evening, plunging into a raging Gulf of Mexico on Sunday to close the first practical flight of the futuristic spacecraft cruise spacecraft. ,

Crew-1 Commander Michael Hopkins, along with NASA astronauts Victor Glover և Shannon Walker և Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi, planned to disembark from the Harmony space port in front of the station at 8 p.m. 35, splashing in the Persian Gulf, south of Panama, Florida, at 2 a.m. Sunday. 57.

The return of the Crew Dragon to Earth will mark only the second pilot water landing, when SpaceX began launching astronauts into NASA’s commercial crew program last year; it was just the third night owl in space history. The first in almost 45 years.

Crew-1 astronauts Shannon Walker, Victor Glover, Michael Hopkins և Sochi Noguchi, pictured in the module of the Destiny Laboratory of the floating space station, will complete their 168-day vacation in orbit at dawn on Sunday. / Credit: NASA

Crew-1 astronauts Shannon Walker, Victor Glover, Michael Hopkins և Sochi Noguchi, pictured in the Destiny Laboratory of the floating space station here, will complete their 168-day stay in the Gulf of Mexico before dawn on Sunday. / Credit: NASA

SpaceX crews were deployed to the landing area on Saturday to secure the Crew Dragon, transfer it to the company’s recovery ship, and help astronauts out of the spacecraft as they begin to gravitate after five-thirty. months of weightlessness.

After medical examinations of և friends և family, all four crew members were to be flown ashore and handed over to NASA crew to return to the John Onson Space Center in Houston.

While mission leaders prefer daytime landings, dry weather has ruled out new entry plans on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Due to the expected mild wind on Sunday, NASA and SpaceX agreed on the return of Crew-1 astronauts to pre-orbit.

In contrast to Crew Dragon’s first pilot shock last August, when the spacecraft was quickly surrounded by sailors enjoying the Persian Gulf on Sunday afternoon, the Coast Guard planned to provide a 10-mile landing area for early morning viewers. away

The return of Crew Dragon will complete a record-breaking crew rotation that will require two launches in just three weeks, two landings on four different spacecraft to replace the entire seven-person crew of the International Space Station.

The first Crew Dragon shock occurred last August when astronauts Douglas Hurley և Robert Behken landed in the Gulf of Mexico after the first SpaceX capsule pilot flight. / Credit: NASA

The first Crew Dragon shock occurred last August when astronauts Douglas Hurley և Robert Behken landed in the Gulf of Mexico after the first SpaceX capsule pilot flight. / Credit: NASA

On April 9, a Russian Soyuz spacecraft Oleg Novitsky, Peter Dubrov and NASA astronaut Mark Vande Haye were transported to the station after the launch of the Baikonur astronaut from Kazakhstan. They replaced Another Soyuz crew – Sergei Ryzhikov, Sergei Kud-Sverchkov և Kate Rubins, who returned to Earth on April 17.

Then, on April 24, Crew Dragon brought Crew-2 Commander Shane Kimbrow, NASA astronaut Megan McArthur, European Space Agency astronaut Thomas Pesket, and Japanese spacecraft Akihiko Hoshide. to the station, The first phase of the Falcon 9 rocket, which: run them the day before he helped launch Hopkins և the company, the staff they replace at the station.

After helping the Crew-2 astronauts, they settled in the laboratory complex: Hopkins, Glover, Walker ոգ Noguchi, who arrived at the station on November 16, planned to say goodbye to seven of its crew members on Saturday night to swim in their crew dragon to unwind.

After removing the safe distance from the ship, the ship’s flight computer is programmed to fire the ship’s brake actuators for about 16 and a half minutes from 02:03 on Sunday morning.

Moving through space at more than 17,100 miles / second, more than 83 football fields per second. The rocket launch is designed to slow the crew to just 258 mph, as much as possible to launch the far side of the orbit into a dense low-altitude path to the Gulf of Mexico.

The Crew Dragon, protected by a high-tech heat shield, is expected to make a strong intrusion under atmospheric contact fire at 2 a.m. Within 45, slowing down rapidly.

Once out of the plasma heating zone, the spacecraft’s parachutes must be opened, allowing the ship to be deployed at a relatively gentle impact.

The last landing of the previous night was in October 1976, when two astronauts of the Soviet-era Soyuz spacecraft made an unplanned landing in a snowstorm after a failed port and were transported from the river to a large lake in Azerbaijan. It took nine hours for the rescue crew to move the spacecraft ashore to rescue the astronauts.

The only overnight shock occurred in December 1968, when the crew of Apollo 8, coming from a Christmas trip to the Moon, made a planned, uneven pre-field landing in the Pacific Ocean.

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