The International Space Station’s crew continues to be pretty active and preoccupied with scientific experiments. The five participating space agencies (NASA, ESA, JAXA, Roscosmos, and CSA) have high hopes for the future of cosmic explorations. But as astronauts also have to return home from the space station, that’s the case now for Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley.
Behnken and Hurley are both NASA astronauts, and they were sent back to Earth after spending two months onboard the International Space Station. But the way they were sent is a premiere.
First flight in SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft
The Crew Dragon spacecraft undocked from the ISS (International Space Station) to carry the first astronauts on a journey. The two brave souls began their 19-hour trip to home after undocking on August 1st at 7:35 p.m. EDT (2335 GMT).
Hurley told the station’s crew the following:
It’s been a great two months and we appreciate all you’ve done as a crew to help us prove out Dragon on its maiden flight,
We look forward to splashdown tomorrow.
As a reply, station commander Chris Cassidy of NASA said:
Safe travels and have a successful landing,
Bob Behnken is a NASA member for 20 years, and he’s 50 years old. Behnken is an astronaut, engineer, and former Chief for the Astronaut Office. He has a Ph.D in mechanical engineering and also the rank of colonel in the U.S. Air Force.
Douglas Gerald Hurley, the other NASA astronaut that returns home is 53 years old. He’s also an engineer and former Marine Corps pilot. He was the one piloting space shuttle missions STS-127 and STS-135, as they represented the final flight of the space shuttle program.
Space exploration is a priceless activity and surely the world needs as much of it as possible, but you know what they say: there’s no place like home.