After hitting a technical snag the day before, SpaceX finally managed to get its Dragon spacecraft to the International Space Station, making the latest ISS commercial resupply mission a success.
While the Dragon capsule was completing its rendezvous, a Russian Progress supply ship was continuing its own approach to the space station. SpaceX officials say they will attempt to dock again Thursday.
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"Today was smooth sailing all the way along", NASA spokesman Rob Navias said after the hookup. People can watch NASA's live coverage through NASA TV at 8 a.m. This is the first time SpaceX had to abort an ISS delivery mission as the company has been delivering supplies to the ISS since 2012.
The spacecraft is in excellent shape with no issues, and the crew aboard the space station is safe.
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With Dragon captured, flight controllers in Mission Control will remotely use the station's robotic arm to park the spacecraft at an Earth-facing port on the orbiting lab's Harmony module.
Apparently, the pod was only about three quarters of a mile away from the station when the error happened.
On Saturday, the craft's launch was aborted just seconds ahead of rocket ignition, due to an anomaly in its steering system. It is the 10th operational resupply mission to the ISS for the Dragon capsule, which is loaded with almost 5,500 lbs of cargo and supplies for the orbital complex.
The cargo also includes materials for several biological experiments, but the delay should not impact any science or supplies.
"One experiment will use the microgravity environment to grow stem cells that are of sufficient quality and quantity to use in the treatment of patients who have suffered a stroke".