Crew-2 successfully launches and docks to the ISS

SpaceX DM-1 Launch // Photo: Ryan Bale

Yesterday morning, SpaceX launched their Falcon 9 rocket from LC-39a in Florida, carrying 4 Astronauts inside the Crew Dragon spacecraft. This launch included the first time Crew launched on a flight proven Falcon 9 and Crew Dragon spacecraft, the first time 2 Commercial Crew spacecraft are docked to the ISS at the same time, and the first Commercial Crew mission to fly 2 International partners.


Following the launch at 5:49am EDT, the Falcon 9 first stage successfully landed on their droneship "Of Course I Still Love You" stationed out in the Atlantic Ocean just as Crew Dragon was brought into a nominal Orbit around the Earth. A series of burns were completed by the spacecraft to bring it into an encounter with the ISS to prepare for docking.


There was an unexpected piece of orbital debris on track to pass uncomfortably close to the Crew Dragon spacecraft just as the Crew were preparing to sleep on their coast to the ISS. The encounter occurred at 1:43pm EDT from a further distance than expected, allowing the crew to slip out of their pressure suits again and get back to going to sleep before their arrival at the Space Station.


Early this morning, Crew Dragon approached and docked autonomously to the ISS at 5:10am EDT and opened the hatch to board the station at 7:05am EDT. The 4 Astronaut crew joined the 7 Astronaut crew currently on the ISS including the Crew-1 crew who launched back in November. On Wednesday, April 28th at 5am EDT, the Crew-1 Astronauts will be closed into their Crew Dragon spacecraft to return back to Earth that same Afternoon.