September 25, 2021
Mission Reports

SpaceX sees growing demand for private Crew Dragon missions

September 23, 2021

With the all-civilian Inspiration4 crew mission back on Earth, SpaceX’s director of human spaceflight programs says the company is seeing increased interest in more private astronauts flights to orbit, and may expand its fleet of reusable Dragon spaceships to accommodate the growing demand.

  • NASA completes swing arm test on SLS launch platform

    September 22, 2021

    The swing arms on the mobile launch tower for NASA’s Space Launch System released and retracted Sunday night inside the Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center, another key test on the march toward liftoff of the Artemis 1 moon mission.

  • NASA announces reorganization of human spaceflight directorate

    September 22, 2021

    NASA announced Tuesday that the agency’s human spaceflight division will split into two new mission directorates, one focused on space operations and another on deep space exploration, returning to the organizational structure of a decade ago.

  • Landsat 9 lifted atop launcher to extend unbroken environmental data record

    September 21, 2021

    The next Landsat observatory has been mounted on top of a United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket in California for liftoff Sept. 27, continuing an unbroken record of Earth observations to track urban sprawl, water usage, tropical deforestation, retreating glaciers, and more over the last half-century.

  • Photos: Inspiration4 launches from Kennedy Space Center

    September 20, 2021

    The first all-private crew to fly into Earth orbit launched Sept. 15 from Kennedy Space Center in Florida, streaking into space on top of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket powered by nine Merlin main engines.

  • Tianzhou ship launches and docks with Chinese space station

    September 20, 2021

    An unpiloted Chinese cargo ship launched and docked with the Tiangong space station Monday, delivering supplies to support the next three-person crew on the complex for six months after their arrival in October.

  • Live coverage: Inspiration4 crew splashes down off Florida coast

    September 18, 2021

    A SpaceX Dragon spacecraft carrying the first all-private, non-government crew to fly in low Earth orbit re-entered the atmosphere and splashed down in the Atlantic Ocean northeast of Cape Canaveral at 7:06 p.m. EDT (2306 GMT) Saturday. The return to Earth closed out a three-day mission in space for the Inspiration4 crew.

  • All-civilian crew prepares for Saturday evening splashdown

    September 18, 2021

    The Inspiration4 crew members wrapped up their third and final day in orbit Saturday and set their sights on an automated plunge back to Earth, a steep descent to an evening splashdown in the Atlantic Ocean near Cape Canaveral to wrap up a history-making flight.

  • Inspiration4 crew describes “incredible perspective” from space

    September 17, 2021

    On their final full day in space Friday, the all-civilian Inspiration4 crew circling Earth inside a SpaceX Dragon capsule chatted with Tom Cruise, rang the closing bell on the New York Stock Exchange, and downlinked a live video update showing views outside their cupola dome window.

  • Chinese crew landing caps record-setting day in human spaceflight

    September 17, 2021

    Three Chinese astronauts landed in the remote Gobi Desert of northwestern China Friday, returning to Earth after a three-month mission on the new Tiangong space station, and ending a historic day in spaceflight that set a new record with 14 people in low Earth orbit.

  • Live coverage: Chinese astronauts return to Earth

    September 17, 2021

    Three Chinese astronauts have returned to Earth in their Shenzhou 12 capsule to conclude a three-month expedition on China’s Tiangong space station. Landing in China’s remote Gobi Desert occurred around 1:34 a.m. EDT (0534 GMT) Friday.

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