Skip to comments.Dragon arrives at space station in historic 1st
Posted on 05/25/2012 8:45:26 AM PDT by mandaladon
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) The privately bankrolled Dragon capsule arrived at the International Space Station for a historic docking Friday, captured by astronauts wielding a giant robot arm.
It succeeded in making the first commercial delivery into the cosmos.
U.S. astronaut Donald Pettit used the space station's 58-foot robot arm to snare the gleaming white Dragon after a few hours of extra checks and maneuvers. The two vessels came together while sailing above Australia.
"Looks like we've got us a dragon by the tail," Pettit announced from 250 miles up once he locked onto Dragon's docking mechanism.
"You've made a lot of folks happy down here over in Hawthorne and right here in Houston," radioed NASA's Mission Control. "Great job guys."
NASA controllers clapped as their counterparts at SpaceX's control center in Hawthorne, Calif. including SpaceX's billionaire maestro, Elon Musk, of PayPal fame lifted their arms in triumph and jumped out of their seats to exchange high fives.
This is the first time a private company has attempted to send a vessel to the space station, an achievement previously reserved for a small, elite group of government agencies. And it's the first U.S. craft to visit the station since the final shuttle flight last July.
The astronauts wasted no time getting the Dragon capsule into position for actual docking to the space station. The unmanned capsule is carrying 1,000 pounds of supplies on this unprecedented test flight.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
I really don’t get what the big deal is here. Orbital launched private satellites almost twenty years ago. Up to 1000 pounds.
Down here, that is.
There are a few things where I support government involvement, which is the military, protection of our homeland/borders and limited involvement/support in space exploration.
Excellent post BTW!
Congratulations to African American, Elon Musk.
This is the commercial space vehicle pressurized with the design of carrying people and bringing them back.
The first proving flight doesn't involve passengers, but it will in the future.
It’s also the first private spacecraft to berth with the International Space Station, as well.
Thanks! IMHO, the government’s commission in space is covered by the Preamble, i.e. providing for the common defense. Like it or not, space is a full-fledged combat theatre. Even if we concede space, others won’t. Engagement is the only option consistant with survival.
And I understand that and why I support limited government involvement in space exploration endeavors and of course military defense.
You bet, and by the way, Musk is a legal U.S. Citizen and actually resides in Ronald Reagan’s old neighborhood.
And NASA is mere months away from sending a far more sophisticated rover to mars.
But, I seriously doubt that many alive today will ever see 'civilization' becoming space-faring - i.e. establishing colonies on other planets.
It's an astounding website.
I know you've seen this Ron, but others should watch the video at bottom of this post. It's very cool.
Taken during mobility testing, this image is of the Mars Science Laboratory rover Curiosity, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
Curiosity lands on the surface of Mars in about 2 months, August, 2012.
I suggest others watch this Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover Animation, about the mission. The video is only 11 minutes long, and well worth the watch.
Enlarge the screen and turn up the volume.
The video which will be sent back from this vehicle traveling around the surface of Mars, will be spectacular.
I’m actually glad that there are two businesses out there working toward these goals. These could be the start of much much more than we realize. With a little experience, these firms may blossom into full blown space access for man as well. Looking forward to the next few years.
slow and steady...pretty cool.
The government will most likely continue to control the boosters. After all, the main difference between an orbital booster and an ICBM is the payload.
I thought they could just send their trash to the giant incinerator in the sky (just jettison it toward the earth and let it burn up in the atmosphere).
Only to the extent of flight authorizations, etc....
Actual technical control of the Falcon 9 during the launch was from Space-X.