NASA Works with SpaceX to Bring Advancements to Space Travel

Four More Astronauts Board the International Space Station


Photo Credits: Space Explored

Bethany Scott, Staff Writer

On November 15, 2020, the Crew Dragon Resilience launched, sending the four Crew-1 astronauts into space. Their destination was the International Space Station. 

Though the Crew Dragon Resilience was supposed to launch on November 14, 2020, NASA and SpaceX were forced to retarget the launch a day later due to “onshore winds and recovery operation” said Jim Bridenstine, a NASA Administrator. 

According to Space Flight Now, liftoff of the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and the Crew Dragon Resilience was at 19:28 November 15, 2020, officially sending the four astronauts, NASA’s Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover, Shannon Walker, and JAXA’s (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) Soichi Noguchi, into orbit.

After the successful launch of the Crew Dragon Resilience, the crew spent over twenty-four hours in orbit, safely docking at the International Space Station. Two hours later, the hatch opened, allowing the Crew Dragon astronauts to join Expedition 64 crew on the International Space Station, bringing the crew total up to seven for the first time ever.

Now, the Crew Dragon astronauts have spent time “getting familiarized with station systems and working space research,” stated NASA.  

The Dragon spacecraft itself is a great advancement in space travel because it is the “only spacecraft currently flying that is capable of returning significant amounts of cargo to Earth, and is the first private spacecraft to take humans to the space station,” says SpaceX. Not only this, but SpaceX actually does commercial flights with private passengers where they go into Earth and also Lunar orbit. As of right now, SpaceX has many future missions, one of them to send humans to Mars. Another mission SpaceX has is to bring humans back to the moon, considering only twenty-four people have ever been on the moon and nobody has been back since 1972. Both missions would be accomplished using their spacecraft, starship, which is said to be “the world’s most powerful launch vehicle ever developed.”

With twenty-three total launches, the Crew Dragon Resilience is advancing space travel greatly.