Dragon big enough for 6 astronauts

2012-05-29 18:53

Cape Town - At least 6 human space flyers can easily fit inside a SpaceX Dragon vehicle, Nasa Astronaut Don Pettit has said from aboard the ISS, to which the Dragon space capsule is tethered at the moment.

The three current station residents who played the key roles in the milestone events of grappling the Dragon cargo resupply craft with the station’s robotic arm and parking it at an open port on the Harmony Node 2 module on Friday, 25 May, spoke to reporters while floating inside Dragon for about 20 minutes all told.

Ken Kremer, writing in Universe Today, says a human-rated Dragon is one of the vehicles engaged in the on-going competition and vying for a Nasa contract. But the first crewed flight to restore US human space flight capability has been delayed by years because of repeated slashes to Nasa’s budget by the US Congress.
 
The gumdrop shaped Dragon capsule is 4.4m tall, and 3.66m in diameter. It has an internal pressurised volume of about 350 cubic feet.

On this first Nasa sponsored test flight to rendezvous and dock at the ISS it was packed with 460kg of non-critical cargo including 306kg of food and crew provisions; 21kg of science experiment; 123kg prepositioned cargo bags to be used for future flights; and 10kg of assorted computer supplies and a laptop.

The Dragon will remain berthed at the ISS for about 6 days until it is detached on 31 May for a return trip to Earth and splashdown and retrieval in the Pacific Ocean a few hundred km off the coast of California.

Read more on:    nasa  |  iss  |  spacex  |  us  |  space
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