Four space station astronauts tied to the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule, circling in front of the International Space Station on Monday, undocking, re-docking at another port, and replacements arrive later this month Paved the way. ..
The move begins a record month for the space station program, with two launches and two landings by four US and Russian spacecraft, carrying seven new crew members to the station, and others. Return 7 people to Earth.
Commander Mike Hopkins, Victor Glover, Shannon Walker, and Japanese astronaut Soichi Noguchi are tied up in suits, and the SpaceX Crew-1 Dragon “Resilience” arrives at 6:30 am Eastern Standard Time. Undocked from the harbor at the front end of the front harmony module of the station. ..
The spacecraft quickly retreated slowly, firing thrusters in the correct order to reach a point directly above the Harmony space-facing harbor. The capsule then glide to dock the nose first and engaged in the harbor capture mechanism at 7:08 am.
The next crew rotation sequence begins on Friday with the launch of the Russian Soyuz spacecraft carrying two astronauts and NASA astronauts from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. A week later, another Soyuz departs from the station, carrying two other astronauts and another NASA astronaut to Earth.
A short “taxi” flight by Crew 1 Dragon Monday was needed to free the port in front of the station for the arrival of another SpaceX.It carries two NASA astronauts, a Japanese leaflet and a crew member of the European Space Agency. The Crew 2 astronauts will be launched from the Kennedy Space Center on the Falcon 9 rocket on April 22nd.
Hopkins, Glover, Walker, and Noguchi will undock again on April 28 and return to Earth with an Atlantic splashdown to complete their 164-day mission.
Crew 1’s departure from Harmony’s space-facing port leaves room for the SpaceX Cargo Dragon to arrive this summer, bringing a new set of solar arrays to the space station.
The Crew Dragon relocation on Monday was designed to allow cargo dragons to dock into the space-facing harbor of Harmony. The harbor can be reached by a lab robotic arm to pull out a rolled-up solar blanket in the unpressurized trunk section of a supply ship.
The arm cannot reach the rear trunk section of the dragon docked in the forward port.