Space transportation company SpaceX, founded by Elon Musk, sent 2 astronauts raised by NASA into space. For the first time in history, the Crew Dragon mission that a private company independent of the states will send people into space has been broadcast live.
People have been sent to space many times until today, but all these times; It was carried out by government-bound official space agencies such as NASA, ESA, Roscosmos or JAXA. We can say that SpaceX, the private space company founded by Elon Musk, has subscribed to state institutions since the beginning of 2010.
SpaceX’s reusable Falcon 9 rockets, the Falcon Heavy rocket, which was created by bringing together 3 Falcon 9s in total; Apart from the Starship spaceship, which is said to have a capacity of 100 passengers, there is another important project: Crew Dragon. The Falcon 9 rocket, which carries a load to the Near-Earth orbit independently of human control, has now taken its place on the launchpad for the Crew Dragon mission, which is now specially designed from the outfit.
SpaceX’s Crew Dragon mission happened like this:
SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket successfully launched its Crew Dragon capsule and two astronauts inside. Leaving the atmosphere in minutes, the rocket left the capsule and returned to the SpaceX station floating on the Atlantic Ocean. SpaceX said in an official Twitter account that the astronauts were in place and the cover of the Dragon spacecraft was closed.
SpaceX becomes the first private company to send people to space
Everyone who has gone to space since Yuri Gagarin was the first human to space was sent by states. Technologies developed by SpaceX so far; was about to carry the satellites and the lifeless loads required for the International Space Station (ISS). For the first time ever, there are Dragon capsules containing 2 astronauts in the top of Falcon 9, where lifeless loads have always been located.
NASA astronauts Douglas Hurley and Bob Behnken have been at the Kennedy Space Center for the past 1 week to complete preparations. Within the Dragon capsule developed by SpaceX, two astronauts, who will wear the special clothes developed by SpaceX for the first time, were the first people to be sent to space by a private company in history.
Highlights of SpaceX Crew Dragon Demo-2 mission
- The Dragon capsule has a passenger capacity of 7, but the Demo-2 mission; It will be done in the form of a real-time test with 2 astronauts.
- The Dragon capsule, which has small rockets on it, will leave the Falcon 9 rocket into space and direct itself to the ISP.
- The Dragon capsule, which reaches the ISS, will autonomously lock on the station, astronauts will begin testing.
- Inside the Dragon capsule, astronauts will carry out the controls entirely with touch screens, not buttons.
- Astronaut Douglas Hurley previously served 28 days 11 hours, astronaut Bob Behnken served 29 days 12 hours in space. So both names have enough experience.
- The Falcon 9 rocket, which will launch the Dragon capsule with astronauts into space, has fully autonomous systems. He returned to the floating SpaceX station on the Atlantic Ocean.
- Since 2011, NASA has been using Soyuz rockets developed by Russia. Another goal of Crew Dragon is to save NASA from paying millions of dollars to Russia.
- For the past 9 years, people have not been sent to space from within the US. In this sense, Crew Dragon aims to bring the space prestige it has lost to the USA after a long time.
- Also, for the first time in history, a private company sent people into space.
How will SpaceX’s special clothing protect astronauts?
The new jumpsuits, which are quite different from the astronaut outfits that we are accustomed to see, have a simpler design, but behind this simple and light look, there are no different technologies than superhero costumes. Helmets are printed with 3D printers in accordance with the size of each astronaut’s head. Of course, they are also said to be resistant to high temperatures and cold, extreme conditions.
Another interesting detail about the costumes is its designer. Designing the heroes’ costumes for the movies Batman, X-Men, and Thor, Jose Fernandez worked with SpaceX for the new astronaut outfits.
How will astronauts return to earth?
- According to SpaceX’s plans, after the Dragon capsule is locked to the ISS, astronauts will do several tests for the capsule’s adequacy.
- Then the Dragon capsule will leave the station for return to the earth and glide towards the earth, calculated from the space.
- Meanwhile, rockets on the capsule will be used.
- The parachute will be opened and landing on the Atlantic Ocean.
- SpaceX’s Go Navigator; The team will take the Dragon capsule and take it ashore.