A safe dock marks the end of the first phase of a landmark mission for NASA and SpaceX, which have spent decades deciding on the return of human space travel capabilities to the United States and the multi-billion dollar ISS.
It also marks the first full-fledged crew for SpaceX, following a test mission in May in which two NASA astronauts, Douglas Hurley and Robert Behanken, were taken to the space station for a brief stay.
During a brief transmission between Mission Control and the astronauts on Monday afternoon, Mission Commander Hopkins asked ground control operators if they could see Clover smiling because “it hasn’t stopped since we got here.”
The task control had to work through some small The technical hangovers on the autonomous Crew Dragon spacecraft overnight, the ride seemed to go smoothly on Monday. Since the launch of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Florida on Sunday evening, the Crew Dragon spacecraft has been slowly elevating its orbit and maneuvering closer to the space station.
In the meantime, the astronauts were able to change their comfortable clothes into more comfortable clothes and get some sleep. NASA deliberately extended the free flight time of the crew dragon orbit, allowing the crew to sleep so that they would be fully awake, the ISS said.
The Crew-1 astronauts are expected to spend about six months aboard the ISS, where they will work on a variety of scientific experiments and conduct spacewalks to carry out updates and repairs on the exterior of the space station.
Before returning home, they will join another group of astronauts on a mission called Crew-2, which is scheduled to launch in the spring.