Dragon crew lifted to space, inspired many
Sitting atop a Falcon 9 rocket, two American astronauts blasted off into space for the first time in nine years from their home soil into low-earth orbit.
Astronauts Robert Behnken and Doug Hurley were strapped into SpaceX’s Dragon capsule for the ride. SpaceX also designed and built the rocket as well.
As the countdown neared for liftoff, goose bumps formed on the arms and necks of millions around the world as they sat glued to their TVs, phones or other devices that captured the moment in history.
The flight was the first since 2011 that an American-made capsule and rocket propelled itself into the Earth’s upper atmosphere, breaking into orbit since the shuttle program stopped. This is also the first time a commercial-made rocket was used to deliver humans to space.
Those present at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida were many dignitaries, including President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and half of the cabinet, according to reports.
It must have been quite an experience to watch the rocket careen upward at its planned trajectory.
According to NASA’s live broadcast of the event, the engines caused the ground to rumble underneath as the rocket went into liftoff.
Speaking of liftoff, the rocket shot straight up into the air with no build up at all. That was quite impressive.
Once the rocket made it to a certain altitude and velocity, it disconnected from the Dragon capsule and began its controlled decent back to Earth.
A camera was positioned where the rocket was going to land itself somewhere near Northern Ireland, if memory serves.
In fact, the camera went out for about 10 seconds and once it came back online, there was the rocket, unharmed and ready to use once again.
The next day, both Behnken and Hurley docked with the International Space Station (ISS) and after going through the required procedures, were welcomed aboard by the current occupants.
Did you know that the ISS has someone on board year round? And that it’s been this way since 2000?
That’s impressive and inspiring at the same time.
We, from Earth, wish each of the astronauts at the ISS a productive work period and Godspeed.