As you may know SpaceX’s launch from recent times was a success and those aboard made it to the ISS safely but now it is time for them to return home and that in itself is something we’re all anticipating.
For those who may not know this ship or spacecraft, whatever you want to call it is being manned by a couple of NASA astronauts. Those astronauts (Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley) have spent about 2 months on the space station itself and look forward to coming home according to Space.com. While overall, we assume the landing of this craft will go over just fine, we won’t know for sure until they are safe back here on Earth.
This interesting event will be life streamed and so if you’re wanting to watch you can, Tech Crunch wrote as follows on that:
The Crew Dragon is set to depart from the ISS at 7:34 PM EDT (4:34 PM PDT) tonight, but NASA is planning a day of related coverage including a live official departure ceremony that starts at 9:10 AM EDT and that involves Behnken and Hurley officially saying goodbye to their ISS crewmates before climbing into the capsule to close it up and prep for departure. The capsule is then set to make the multi-hour trip back to Earth and splashdown in the Atlantic Ocean at around 2:42 PM EDT (11:42 AM PDT) tomorrow.
There are potential complicating factors to be aware of – most notably Hurricane Isaias, which could impact the availability of suitable landing sites in the ocean, where recovery crews have to be able to safely rendezvous with the capsule to pick up Hurley and Behnken. Currently, weather is a go for the mission, but we’ll provide an update if that changes.
Now, if you want to watch all you have to do is tune into NASA’s Livestream on Youtube at the time noted above. Now, if weather is rough and conditions are not ideal the event itself will be postponed but as of right now things seem in full swing. According to Space.com the crew has three days worth of supplies in the event something like that were to happen and they were to need to wait until it was safe to land.
Space.com reported as follows on these crew members and their trip home:
Along with the two astronauts, there are 330 lbs. (150 kilograms) of cargo returning on the Crew Dragon. About 200 lbs. of that is science supplies, particularly biological samples that have been packed away into freezers.
“These samples are from a range of biological research experiments on the station dedicated to improving our understanding of how the human body adapts to microgravity or looking at ways to use space to improve life back here on Earth,” NASA TV commentator Gary Jordan said in a live webcast of the undocking.
The astronauts have also captured an American flag, one left on the station by NASA’s last space shuttle crew in July 2011 as a goal for the first commercial crew flight. They are also expected to return a small plush Earth toy, called “Earthie,” that arrived on SpaceX’s first unpiloted Crew Dragon test flight Demo-1 in 2019.
Behnken and Hurley are also bringing home Tremor the Apatosaurus, a toy dinosaur that the astronauts used as their zero-g indicator when they launched on May 30. The dinosaur was selected by Behnken’s 6-year-old son Theo and Hurley’s son Jack, who is 10.
“As I look forward to heading back home for the splashdown, I do think that from a family perspective, my son and Doug’s son are really excited not only to get their fathers back but to get our apatosaurus, our ‘zero-g indicator’ that they nominated to go with us on this historic mission to the International Space Station,” Behnken said early Saturday before undocking.
“So, for Jack and Theo, Tremor the Apatosaurus is headed home soon and he’ll be with your dads,” Behnken added. “You’ll have to pick which one of us is your favorite.”
What do you think about all of this? I for one think it will be something to go in the history books and hope all goes over well. I cannot wait to watch and see this marvelous venture home.