This will be the second mission of the Crew Dragon spacecraft approved to the International Space Station.
SpaceX does not waste any time. Because the first Crew Dragon spacecraft will not return to Earth until the next vehicle is launched. SpaceX plans to fly astronauts to the International Space Station again in April. This will be the second mission of the Crew Dragon spacecraft approved to the International Space Station.
Crew Mission 1
The first mission to the International Space Station was carried out – the so-called Crew-1 mission In mid-November. It was the start of the first real assignment within Commercial Crew. Four astronauts – Dragon Crew Leader Michael Hopkins, Pilot Victor Glover, Mission Specialist Shannon Walker, and Japanese mission specialist Soishi Noguchi – departed to the International Space Station aboard the Certified Dragon Crew. By the way, they are still there. Because the plan is that they will not return to Earth until late April or early May. The spacecraft will then land in waters off the coast of Florida, and the crew will be transported ashore by ship and then transported by plane to the Johnson Space Center in Houston.
The arrival of the Crew-1 mission to the International Space Station was a critical moment. For the first time, an accredited space company brought astronauts to the International Space Station. Additionally, it was the first time in nearly a decade that astronauts on an official mission were launched from US soil. And as it appears now, this will happen a lot in the coming years. With the necessary paperwork available, SpaceX will time and time again bring astronauts to the International Space Station in the coming years. In addition to SpaceX, Boeing has also developed a spacecraft with which it can bring astronauts to the International Space Station on behalf of NASA. However, they are a little behind in SpaceX. The second experimental unmanned flight of Boeing’s Starliner is taking place to the International Space Station Expected to take place at the end of March. With the release of so-called “ commercial crew contracts, ” NASA left its hands free for the further development of its Orion system and the SLS launch system, which In 2024, astronauts will be placed on the surface of the Moon.
Meanwhile, NASA and SpaceX are also making real Crew-2 mission plans. During this mission, four more astronauts will be brought to the International Space Station, this time aboard the Crew Dragon Endeavor. The Crew-2 mission is expected to fly into the sky on April 20, 2021, propelled by a Falcon 9 missile, from the famous Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Aboard the Crew Dragon Endeavor, NASA astronauts Shane Kimbro (Commander) and Megan MacArthur (Pilot) will travel to the International Space Station with Japanese mission specialist Akihiko Hoshid and European Space Agency mission specialist Thomas Pesquet. It is therefore the first mission to bring two international crew members to the International Space Station as part of the commercial crew program. Additionally, Crew-2’s mission promises to be another – albeit to a lesser degree – milestone as a crew of astronauts on a US rocket and spacecraft will be launched from US soil for a second time.
You may have already seen it, but as seen above, there’s a good chance the Crew-1 and Crew-2 mission will overlap. This means that the astronauts launched by SpaceX will be on the International Space Station at the same time. When the first crew astronauts return home, they will have spent six months on the International Space Station. The plan is that the crews of the Crew-2 mission will also remain on the International Space Station for a long time. They are expected to return to Earth this fall.
Crew mission 3
Thus SpaceX’s launch mill is running at full speed. Because after this Crew-2 mission, there are already plans to fire the Crew-3 mission onto the drawing board. This is currently scheduled for this fall. This indicates that SpaceX takes its mission of bringing frequent astronauts to the International Space Station very seriously.
Incidentally, it is not intended that only astronauts be brought to the International Space Station on board SpaceX ‘Crew Dragon. Because also “ordinary” citizens will be able to admire the International Space Station. The space travel agency Axiom Space recently announced Who will be the first four space tourists. It is a march towards more. Because Axiom expects – for those with a large portfolio – to organize about two totally private trips each year.
Popular in science
Stay amazed ✨
Get the most beautiful space photos and interesting popular science articles every Friday. Get a free Scientia magazine with 50,000 more.
“Subtly charming tv fanatic. Introvert. Thinker. Alcohol maven. Friendly explorer. Certified coffee lover. Infuriatingly humble food junkie. Typical reader.”