Manned Dragon Spacecraft docking with the Space Station cheers to get rid of dependence on Russia

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 Manned Dragon Spacecraft docking with the Space Station cheers to get rid of dependence on Russia


Interior photo of Dragon spacecraft

NASA released photos of the docking of the manned version of the Dragon spacecraft with the International Space Station

[Global Times reporter Wei Yunfeng] After 27 hours of space trek, the manned version of the Dragon spacecraft developed by SpaceX successfully docked with the International Space Station at 18:51 Beijing time on the 3rd. This is the first time that the United States has acquired manned space capabilities since the decommissioning of the space shuttle in 2011. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) said that the Dragon spacecraft did not carry human beings, but if it goes smoothly, the United States will use the spacecraft to transport two astronauts to space this summer, completely breaking away from dependence on Russian spacecraft.

Successful automatic docking

The manned Dragon spacecraft successfully docked with the International Space Station (ISS) at an altitude of 400 km at 5:51 Eastern Time, the US space website said Wednesday. Such an operation is unfamiliar to American spacecraft. In recent years, the cargo version of the Dragon spacecraft that travels to and from the International Space Station has to rely on astronauts to control the manipulator to catch it, and then to dock carefully. American astronaut Anne McLean sent a congratulatory message on the space station: The docking is successful, congratulations to all the teams involved in the project.

At 2:49 EDT on March 2, SpaceX launched its first manned Dragon spacecraft using the Falcon 9 launch vehicle at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. William Gerstenmeier, NASAs deputy director of manned space operations, said the launch marked a critical first step for American indigenous spacecraft to launch astronauts into space.

As a technology validation flight, the Dragon spacecraft did not actually carry astronauts, but carried a model astronaut, it was named Rapley by SpaceX, which is a tribute to the hero of the classic space movie Alien Rapley. SpaceX Vice President Konigsman said that all the equipment on the Dragon spacecraft complied with manned flight standards, including pressure, sound, vibration, temperature and radiation monitors. In addition, the spacecraft also carried 400 pounds (181 kilograms) of supplies for astronauts on the International Space Station.

Fate is bad

The long-awaited manned spacecraft of the United States is indeed ill-fated. Since the retirement of the U.S. space shuttle in 2011, U.S. astronauts can only rely on Russias Soyuz spacecraft to travel to and from space. Especially in recent years, Russia has continuously raised the price of space ticket (the latest ticket price is 81 million US dollars), which makes the self-proclaimed space power of the United States difficult to tolerate its astronautsspaceflight being stuck in the neck.

As early as 2014, NASA signed contracts with SpaceX and Boeing to develop new spacecraft to transport astronauts to and from the International Space Station, with SpaceX receiving $2.6 billion and Boeing receiving $4.2 billion. But both SpaceX and Boeing said they were unable to complete their first validation flight in 2017 as planned. The progress of the project was delayed until early this year, when NASA announced that the manned Dragon spacecraft would make its first flight in February, but the first flight was eventually changed to March 2. Boeings Star Line spacecraft had similar first test flights earlier than April.

Space website said that the successful docking with the International Space Station does not mean the successful completion of the Dragon spacecraft space mission. After five days in space, it will return to Earth, and the burning of high temperatures across the atmosphere may be the biggest test it faces. Mask, president of SpaceX, said that the manned Dragon spacecraft had redesigned its hull and parachute system. Although they performed very well in computer simulation, they have not yet undergone actual testing. If all goes well, another new Dragon spacecraft will officially take two American astronauts to the International Space Station in July.

Opening the Space Travel Age

For SpaceX President Musk, the manned version of the Dragon spacecraft will not only help NASA get rid of its dependence on Russian spacecraft, but also be the first step in opening up space travel to commercial customers, the BBC website said Wednesday. According to reports, unlike traditional spacecraft in a narrow and crowded environment, the manned version of the Dragon spacecraft has much larger internal space, and is equipped with advanced hardware and software, including the use of a technology-filled super touch interface rather than a complex dashboard. Musk declared that this would greatly improve the automation of the spacecraft and reduce the cost of astronautslearning. In most missions, astronauts can throw heavy control manuals beside them, concentrate their operations on touch screens, and keep only minimal physical keys to deal with extreme situations.

According to Musks plan, the manned version of the Dragon spacecraft fully considered the needs of future space travel at the beginning of its design. It can accommodate up to seven crew members, and is equipped with advanced environmental control and life support system to provide a comfortable and safe environment for the crew. Passengers can sit in seats made of top-grade carbon fibers and Alcantara cloth and enjoy the beauty of space through windows. In addition, the manned version of the Dragon spacecraft can be reused, which greatly reduces the cost of space travel. SpaceX is also planning larger spacecraft, including a star ship that can accommodate 100 passengers, for manned landings on Mars. A kind of

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