It seems like just a few days ago, when we live after months of testing, the launch of Crew Dragon Demo-2, the first manned space launch launched from US soil since 2011, although in reality two months have already passed. Some did not even know, the vast majority lived it with a certain interest, and some, maybe few, we really get excited about that moment. Whether it was watching NASA and SpaceX broadcasts over the Internet, or by the hand of popularizers, and here I express my personal preference for Alex Riveiro, who I have been following for years on Twitter and whose Twitch channel I have been a subscriber for some time. months.
Since that day, the Crew Dragon has remained anchored to the International Space Station, where it awaited its time to return to Earth, to bring home Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley, thus completing a historical mission for various reasons, mainly the entrance through the large door of SpaceX in the manned missions, and from the hand of it, that the United States can return to carry out this type of missions without depending on other countries, as it had been happening since 2011, after the last mission from the shuttle Atlantis.
The return of the Crew Dragon It was not clear until a few hours ago, due to the presence of the tropical storm Isaias which is currently hitting the Florida coast, precisely the place where the arrival is expected, near Pensacola, and that could have seriously compromised the rescue efforts of the astronauts after the splash-down from the ship. Such was the uncertainty that, even when Behnken and Hurley said goodbye to those who have been their companions during these two months, they did so with some skepticism, since it was not clear if it would finally be possible or, for security reasons, NASA would choose to cancel this return and delay it for a few days.
Finally, and fortunately, the weather conditions in the reentry area became clear, and the agency decided to proceed with the return mission, so that At around 1.30 in the morning from Saturday to Sunday (Spanish time), the Crew Dragon, with the two astronauts inside, was decoupling from the International Space Station, thus beginning a journey that will end, if everything goes as planned, at 20:42 on Sunday (Spanish time), when the capsule is posed on the Atlantic Ocean and the safety of its crew begins and the recovery of the ship.
In this SpaceX tweet you can see the moment the Crew Dragon was separated from the International Space Station and his return to Earth began:
– SpaceX (@SpaceX) August 1, 2020
There are several possibilities to follow the last hours of the Crew Dragon in space and his return home. NASA is offering live signal, through YouTube, of what happens inside the ship, combined with a team of communicators and disseminators who promptly document everything that is happening, what stage the mission is in at all times and share very interesting information about the entire context of the mission. In addition, they respond to questions asked through Twitter with the hashtag #AskNASA in the message. You can see that live clicking here.
For his part, SpaceX is also emitting the same signal, although at some point it may change NASA’s for its own on your YouTube channel, when the Crew Dragon is closer to the landing. You can see her live in this link.
And as a personal recommendation, and as I already mentioned at the beginning, I think it is even more interesting live this type of events with the help of popularizers like Riveiro, which are opened by the NASA and / or SpaceX directives and complement all the information on them with additional data, answers to queries that arise in the chat … This is, without a doubt, my preferred option, and where I will see the reentry and the splash-down of the Crew Dragon. If you stop by, we will surely see each other.