SpaceX Dragon capsule docks with International Space Station
Addis Ababa, May 31, 2020 (FBC) – US astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken have docked with the International Space Station (ISS).
Their Dragon capsule – supplied and operated by the private SpaceX company – edged them into port on the high-flying lab’s bow section.
The men will have to wait for leak and pressure checks to be completed before they can disembark and join the Russian and American crew already on the ISS.
Hurley and Behnken launched from Florida on Saturday.
It was the first time since the retirement of the shuttles nine years ago that the US space agency has sent up astronauts from home soil.
The mission marks the beginning of a new era in which Nasa will be purchasing transport services from the commercial sector.
No more will it own and operate the vehicles that run to and from the station.
This will be done, as in this case, by firms like California’s SpaceX outfit, which is led by tech billionaire Elon Musk.
SpaceX and Nasa want to move swiftly to the next phase of the $2.6bn contract which will see six crew taxi flights, with the first to occur at the end of August, according to BBC.