Donald Trump, President of the United States, sent this Sunday, through his Twitter account, a message to the two astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration ( NASA ), after returning to planet Earth aboard SpaceX, the country’s first manned spacecraft to travel to the International Space Station (ISS) since the end of the shuttle era.
“It’s great that NASA astronauts return to Earth after a successful two-month mission. Thank you all! […] Astronauts complete the first dip in 45 years. Very exciting!”
The mission, carried out jointly by the private company SpaceX and NASA, shows that the United States once again has the ability to send astronauts into space and bring them back. The four main parachutes from SpaceX’s Crew Dragon Endeavor capsule were deployed and floated gently after the spacecraft landed in the Pensacola, Fla. , Water at 2:48 p.m. local time.
The final phase of this joint operation between NASA and the company of the eccentric Elon Musk faced until the last moment fears about the risk of tropical storm Isaías, which borders the Florida peninsula and that had ruled out the original place for landing (landing on water). The mission’s success also marks a major victory for SpaceX, which Musk founded in 2002 and has overtaken Boeing, its main competitor.
- The United States has paid those two companies about $ 7 billion for their contracts for the “space taxi” service.
- Behnken and Hurley have become the first astronauts to be taken into space by a private company hired by NASA.
The SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft departed from the International Space Station on Saturday night. Images from NASA showed that the capsule slowly away from the ISS in the darkness of space, ending a two – month stay for both crewmembers. During a farewell ceremony at the station, Behnken stated that “the most difficult part was launching ourselves. But the most important part is taking us home. ”