SpaceX Dragon Returns to Earth

SpaceX Dragon Splashdown

SpaceX’s Commercial Flight to Refuel International Space Station Completed

The SpaceX Dragon has returned to terra firma after its historic refueling mission to the International Space Station. The successful completion of the mission is a landmark in the nascent development of the commercial space industry.

Via a SpaceX press release:

Hawthorne, CA – Today at 12:22 p.m. PT, SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft returned to Earth from the International Space Station, safely splashing down approximately 250 miles off the coast of southern California.

“This historic mission signifies the restoration of America’s ability to deliver and return critical space station cargo,” said SpaceX CEO and Chief Technical Officer Elon Musk. “The reliability of SpaceX’s technology and the strength of our partnership with NASA provide a strong foundation for future missions and achievements to come.”

Dragon departed the station early this morning with 1,673 pounds of return cargo including hardware, supplies, and a GLACIER freezer packed with scientific samples. Dragon is the only craft capable of returning a significant amount of supplies to Earth, and this mission marks the first time since the space shuttle that NASA has been able to return research samples for analysis.

(Previously on Ultraculture: Elon Musk: Let’s Have Some Solar-Powered Cars)

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