Monday, August 3rd, 2020

Nasa SpaceX crew return: Dragon capsule splashes down

Published 11:54 pm | August 03, 2020

dainik somoy sangbad

Online Desk : Two American astronauts have splashed down, as the first commercial crewed mission to the International Space Station returned to Earth.

The SpaceX Dragon Capsule carrying Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken came down in the Gulf of Mexico just south of Pensacola on Florida’s Gulf coast.

A recovery vessel moved in to pick up the vehicle and extricate the men, reports BBC.

The touchdown marks the first crewed US water landing since the final outing of an Apollo command module 45 years ago.

Hurley’s and Behnken’s capsule hit the water at about 14:48 EDT (19:48 BST; 18:48 GMT).

Private boats which came close to the Dragon were asked to leave amid concern over hazardous chemicals venting from the capsule’s propulsion system.

Nasa administrator Jim Bridenstine said the presence of the boats “was not what we were anticipating”.

“What is not common is having passersby approach the vehicle close range with nitrogen tetroxide in the atmosphere; that’s not something that is good,” he said. “And we need to make sure that we’re warning people not to get close to the spacecraft in the future.”

Photos of the boats were shared on social media.

“It’s truly our honour and privilege,” said Hurley as the astronauts arrived home.

“On behalf of the SpaceX and Nasa teams, welcome back to Planet Earth. Thanks for flying SpaceX,” SpaceX mission control responded. President Donald Trump – who attended the capsule’s launch on 30 May – hailed its safe return.

“Thank you to all!” he tweeted. “Great to have NASA Astronauts return to Earth after very successful two month mission.”

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