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SpaceX Crew-3 Mission Ferrying Astronauts To ISS Successful: Here’s How They Pulled It Off
SpaceX has once again successfully lifted off its Crew Dragon capsule, carrying four astronauts to space. The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket carried the Crew Dragon capsule and successfully launched into space at 9:30 PM, November 10 (at 8 AM, November 11, Indian time). The launch marked the Crew-3 mission carrying four astronauts to the International Space Station.
SpaceX Crew-3 Mission Liftoff
To note, there were several delays due to bad weather, after which, the countdown to the Crew-3 Mission liftoff proceeded smoothly. The SpaceX crew conducted the critical leak check, communications check, and other tasks ahead of the schedule. Soon after, the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifted off at night, lighting up the sky.
Interestingly, the Crew-3 liftoff marked the 25th launch of the year 2021 in Florida. Out of which 24 are for SpaceX. Also, the Dragon Crew capsule used for this launch was brand new, even as the Falcon 9 rocket was one of its veteran flying machines.
SpaceX Carries Astronauts To Space, Again
The SpaceX Crew-3 Mission carried four astronauts - NASA's Raja Chari, Tom Marshburn, and Kayla Barron, along with the European Space Agency's Matthias Maurer. "Thanks for the great ride; it was better than we imagined," Chari, who is the commander of the mission, told NASA's mission control after the crew arrived safely in orbit.
Here, the Dragon Crew capsule is carrying the astronauts on a six-month mission to the International Space Station. However, the launch was scheduled to take place nearly 12 days before. But bad weather, a minor medical issue with one of the astronauts, and other issues delayed the launch. NASA refrained from elaborating on the medical issue of the astronaut due to privacy reasons.
Also, the Falcon 9 rocket had to bring back astronauts from the International Space Station before sending the new crew to space. Here, astronauts Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur, ESA's Thomas Pesquet, and Akihiko Hoshide of Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency were safely brought back to Earth before sending in the new crew.
Currently, NASA astronaut Mark Vande Hei will be in charge of acquainting the Crew-3 astronauts with the ISS. What's more, three of the new crew members have never been to space before. This is also something that veteran Marshburn is eager to explore and experience with his new crewmates.
SpaceX Gears Up For More Space Launches
SpaceX has been gradually expanding its presence in space with several new launches and projects. NASA's ambitious Artemis mission to the Moon also involves SpaceX. SpaceX won the Moon Lander contract, something that Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin fought hard to win. Currently, NASA is working on the Moon mission closely with its private space partners.
SpaceX's journey in space has been incredible. The Crew-3 Mission liftoff also marked the 127th flight of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and the 93rd landing of a first stage booster. Moreover, its other projects like Starlink are also gaining momentum in the global market. Particularly in India, the Starlink project aims to provide cheaper broadband services, upping the competition with other private players.