The first all-private team of astronauts launched to the International Space Station (ISS) on Saturday arrived safely on an in-orbit research platform to begin a week-long science mission called a one-mile stretch in a commercial spacecraft. Considered stone. The four-member team representing Axiom Space Inc., a Houston-based startup company, met Friday, nearly 21 hours after aboard the SpaceX-launched Falcon 9 rocket from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center.
The Crew Dragon capsule reached orbit by rocket with the ISS at approximately 8:30 a.m. EDT (1230 GMT) on Saturday, as the two space vehicles were flying about 250 miles (420 km) above the mid-Atlantic Ocean, using a live NASA coupling. Webcast shown. The final approach was delayed due to a technical glitch that disrupted the video feed used to monitor the capsule’s rendezvous with the ISS. Snafu forced Crew Dragon to stop and hold its position 20 meters from the station for approximately 45 minutes, while mission control resolved the problem.
With the docking achieved, it was expected to take approximately two hours for the sealed passage between the space station and the crew capsule and checked for leaks before the hatch could be opened, allowing new arrivals in space. Passengers are allowed to come aboard the ISS. The multinational Axiom team, planning to spend eight days in orbit, was led by Spanish-born retired NASA astronaut Michael López-Alegria, 63, who was the company’s vice president of business development.
His second-in-command was Larry Connor, a real estate and technology entrepreneur and aerobatics aviator from Ohio who was designated as the mission pilot. Connor is in his 70s but the company did not reveal his exact age. The crew of the Ax-1 consisted of investor-philanthropist and former Israeli fighter pilot, 64, and Canadian businessman and philanthropist Mark Pethe, 52, both serving as mission specialists.
Stibbe became the second Israeli to fly into space after Ilan Ramon, who was killed along with six NASA comrades in the 2003 space shuttle Columbia disaster. They will join the existing ISS of seven regular, government-paid space station crew members – three American cosmonauts, one German cosmonaut from the European Space Agency and three Russian cosmonauts.
The science-focused new arrivals brought with them two dozen science and biomedical experiments to be conducted on the ISS, including brain health, cardiac stem cells, cancer and aging, as well as producing optics using the surface tension of fluids in microgravity To include a technology demonstration. ,
The mission, Axiom, a collaboration between Elon Musk’s rocket company SpaceX and NASA, is touted by all three as a major step in expanding space-based commercial activities, which are collectively known by insiders as the low-Earth orbit economy. Referred to as the, or “LEO economy” for short. NASA officials say the trend will help the US space agency focus its resources more on big-science exploration, including its Artemis program to send humans to the Moon and eventually back to Mars. is for.
While the space station has hosted civilian visitors from time to time, the X-1 mission is the first all-commercial team of astronauts sent to the ISS for its intended purpose as an orbiting research laboratory. The Axiom mission stands as SpaceX’s sixth manned spaceflight in nearly two years, following NASA’s four astronaut missions to the space station and the “Inspire 4” launch in September, which put an all-civilian crew into orbit for the first time. Sent. That flight did not dock with the ISS.
Axiom executives say their astronaut venture and plans to build a private space station in Earth orbit are astro-seekers offered to wealthy thrill-seekers by billionaire entrepreneurs Jeff Bezos and companies like Richard-owned Blue Origin and Virgin Galactic. Tourism is far beyond services. Branson.
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