SpaceX Returns Dragon, And NASA Cargo, To Earth

Planet Mars

Astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS) will release SpaceX's robotic Dragon cargo spacecraft early tomorrow (March 19), sending it back to Earth carrying more than 5,400 lbs. Dragon is returning critical science experiments for investigators back on the Earth.

Before its departure, the crew loaded the cargo ship with old equipment, waste and nearly 4,000 pounds of research samples from experiments carried out in the station's condition of microgravity.

The real landing involved the crew releasing the capsule from the International Space Station in the early hours of March 19, and it successfully splashed down off the coast of Baja, California, almost six hours later at 7:46 a.m. local time on March 20.

Please enter your email. The cargo ship was released and "thrown" towards earth using a robotic arm attached on the worldwide space station by astronauts Thomas Pesquet (of France) and Shane Kimbrough (of NASA).

A variety of technological and biological studies are returning in Dragon.

Several external payloads were removed from the space station and placed in the Dragon's trunk for disposal.

"Everything from stem cells that could help us understand how human cancers start and spread after being exposed to near zero-gravity, to equipment that is paving the way toward servicing and refueling satellites while they're in orbit will be on board", NASA wrote in a blog update.

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