A SpaceX Dragon cargo ship made a explicit provide on the World Space Space Saturday (Dec. eight) factual in time for the holidays. And certain, Virginia, there are Christmas treats on board.
The robotic Dragon spacecraft arrived on the reveal space Saturday morning to advise greater than 5,600 pounds (2,540 kilograms) of unique supplies for the six Expedition 57 astronauts on the orbiting lab. SpaceX launched the Dragon ship Wednesday (Dec. 5) from the Cape Canaveral Air Power Space in Florida on Wednesday (Dec. 5).
Space commander Alexander Gerst of the European Space Agency captured the Dragon tablet with a robotic arm at 7:21 a.m. EST (1221 GMT) as both spacecraft sailed 249 miles above the Pacific Ocean, factual north of Papua Contemporary Guinea. Gerst and his crew are seemingly having a sight forward to the supplies packed aboard the spacecraft.
“On this resupply craft they even possess some particular issues respect candied yams, green bean casserole and even some Christmas cookies,” NASA spokesperson Leah Cheshier acknowledged finally of are residing commentary.
The spacecraft is also carrying a trove of science equipment for 250 experiments, at the side of a robotic in-reveal refueling demonstration, a extremely superb GEDI laser to peep Earth’s forests and a original SlingShot machine designed to originate as a lot as 18 cubesats from a Cygnus cargo ship already on the distance. A workforce of reveal-touring mice and 36,000 worms are also on making the reveal outing.
Dragon’s arrival used to be delayed temporarily for that reason of a communications glitch between a NASA’s Tracking and Knowledge Relay Satellites (TDRS) and a flooring space in White Sands, Contemporary Mexico. A processor on the flooring space for the TDRS East satellite failed, forcing NASA to swap to a assorted TDRS satellite to restore communications with the reveal space.
Dragon used to be forced to aid away to a right space-preserving position 100 ft (30 meters) from the distance, then originate a brand new methodology about an hour later than planned. Flight controllers at NASA’s Mission Withhold watch over middle in Houston then took remote aid watch over of the distance’s arm to connect Dragon to its berth on the orbiting lab’s Unity module.
This day’s reveal rendezvous marks the Sixteenth cargo provide mission for NASA by SpaceX. The Dragon on this flight, called CRS-sixteen, has in fact visited the reveal space sooner than. It delivered supplies to the distance February 2017 as segment of NASA’s CRS-10 mission.
Dragon steadily is the sixth spacecraft to hyperlink up with the reveal space in most trendy months. Its arrival follows a Russian Soyuz crew tablet, which arrived final week with three new crewmembers, and the Northrop Grumman Cygnus cargo ship in November. One other Soyuz crew tablet and two uncrewed Russian Progress cargo ships are also docked on the distance.
“We congratulate the total ISS workforce for managing six person spaceships that will seemingly be concurrently docked to the World Space Space from as of late on,” Gerst acknowledged. “This shows what a a hit science and exploration program we possess up right here, making tubby use of the one and most efficient microgravity observatory that humanity has on hand for the honorable thing about all other folks on Earth.”
SpaceX’s Dragon tablet will use about 4 weeks on the reveal space sooner than returning to Earth, according to firm representatives. In January, the spacecraft will seemingly be stuffed with about 4,000 pounds (1,814 kg) of experiment results and various equipment and released aid into reveal. This can even splash down within the Pacific Ocean to be retrieved by a SpaceX recovery ship.