International Edu News: Frailty, old age and comorbidity main predictors of death from Covid-19  |  Policy Indications: Cyber centre to reduce digital harm  |  Policy Indications: New funding to improve water security for 10 million people in Africa and Asia  |  International Edu News: UCL hosts global conference on UN Sustainable Development Goals  |  International Edu News: Medium-term impact of COVID-19 revealed in new study  |  International Edu News: Extremely rapid diagnostic test for Covid-19  |  Teacher Insights: Cambridge University Press to join with Cambridge Assessment  |  National Edu News: Minister inaugurates new Diamond Jubilee Lecture Hall Complex of NIT Jamshedpur  |  Education Information: CSIR partnered clinical trials website “CUReD” on Repurposed Drugs for Covid- 19  |  Teacher Insights: The 6th India International Science Festival to be held in Virtual format  |  National Edu News: Minister virtually inaugurates golden jubilee building at NIT Tiruchirappalli  |  Policy Indications: 'NEP 2020 gives importance to Learning through Experience & Living'  |  Education Information: Union Education Minister inaugurates Golden Jubilee Building at NIT Rourkela  |  National Edu News: Union Education Minister virtually attends 8th Convocation of IIT Indore  |  National Edu News: PM addresses the Centenary Convocation of the University of Mysore   |  
March 05, 2019 Tuesday 10:11:24 AM IST

SpaceX Rocket With Unmanned US Capsule Blasts Off for Space Station

Technology Inceptions

A SpaceX rocket with an unmanned crew capsule blasted off on Saturday for the International Space Station, in a key milestone for Elon Musk's space company and NASA's long-delayed goal to resume human spaceflight from U.S. soil later this year.

SpaceX's 16-foot-tall (4.9 meter) Crew Dragon capsule, atop a Falcon 9 rocket, lifted off from Florida's Kennedy Space Center at 2:49am (01:19pm IST), carrying a test dummy nicknamed Ripley.

The capsule successfully separated from the rocket about 11 minutes later, sparking cheers in the control room, and began its journey to the space station.

The station's three-member crew was expected to greet the capsule, carrying 400 pounds (181 kg) of supplies and test equipment, early Sunday morning, NASA said.


During its five-day stay, U.S. astronaut Anne McClain and Canadian astronaut David Saint-Jacques will run tests and inspect Crew Dragon's cabin.

NASA has awarded SpaceX and Boeing Co $6.8 billion (roughly Rs. 61,057 crores) to build competing rocket and capsule systems to launch astronauts into orbit from American soil for the first time since the US Space Shuttle was retired from service in 2011.

Either SpaceX or Boeing will have bragging rights as the first private company to launch humans into space on its own rocket, although plans call for rockets built by both companies to carry astronauts into space.

The launch systems are aimed at ending US reliance on Russian rockets for rides to the $100 billion (roughly Rs. 7,09,975 crores) orbital research laboratory, which flies about 250 miles (402 km) above Earth, at about $80 million per ticket.


While Saturday's SpaceX test mission is a crucial step in the oft-delayed project, there are questions about whether NASA can achieve its 2019 flight goal of manned flight.

Reuters reported on Feb. 21 that SpaceX and Boeing both must address significant design and safety concerns before they can fly humans.

Early on Friday, Musk, who is also chief executive officer of electric carmaker Tesla Inc, tweeted a photo of the inside of Crew Dragon capsule with Ripley strapped inside.


SpaceX said the spacesuit for Ripley, apparently a reference to the protagonist in the science fiction movie "Alien", has been embedded with sensors around its head, neck, and spine to monitor how a flight would feel for a human.

Comments