The rocket which made history, has finally returned back home after dropping off Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley at the International Space Station.
Tales of Elon Musk and his Falcon 9 will be sung for centuries, as he managed to establish the first private company to send astronauts to space. After experimenting for years and extensive testing, Demo 2 happened, which was SpaceX’s first manned operation. Now, the two NASA astronauts will stay in the ISS for one to 4 months, with the correct duration still not decided.
Just 9 minutes after the takeoff, the Falcon 9 rocket made its way to a perfect landing at SpaceX drone ship “Of Course I Still Love You,” which was situated just a few miles off the coast of Florida. The rocket made its way through the harsh sea water, fighting against the tides of ocean and fate, and finally made it way back to land at Florida’s Port Canaveral.
“After launching @AstroBehnken and @Astro_Doug to orbit on Crew Dragon, Falcon 9 landed on the Of Course I Still Love You droneship and returned to Port Canaveral,” SpaceX revealed in a tweet.
Falcon 9 rockets are loved for their reusability. The rockets have been designed in a way that they can be refurbished and used for multiple flights. However, this one probably won’t make the list, as it will probably end up in a museum or Elon Musk’s house. The first Falcon 9 first stage that ever landed successfully, for example, now stands outside SpaceX’s headquarters in Hawthorne, California, so this won’t be out of nature for the company.
Demo 2 was the last “testing” flight for SpaceX’s Crew Dragon space flights. Now, the company can fulfill its commitment to NASA and launch astronauts in space right from American soil.
This also became the first flight to carry astronauts to space from America, after NASA’s last flight in 2011. After that, the biggest space agency in the world had to rely on Russia, America’s arch nemesis in the space field, to carry its astronauts to space. SpaceX also became the first private company to deliver cargo to the International space station, which is no small feat.
Now, Victor Glover, Mike Hopkins, Shannon Walker and JAXA astronaut Soichi Noguchi have gone into preparation mode for Crew 1, which will be the first “real” flight from SpaceX.