Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken, two veteran space shuttle fliers, are gearing up to fly a privately-developed SpaceX Dragon capsule into orbit this year.
The two astronauts participated in several major training events in March, including long-duration simulations to rehearse procedures they will execute during launch on top of a Falcon 9 rocket, their docking with the International Space Station, and then departure from the orbiting lab for return to Earth.
SpaceX and NASA engineers joined the astronauts in the simulations, rehearsing their roles at control centers at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne, California, and NASA’s space station control center in Houston.
The Crew Dragon’s first piloted mission, known as Demo-2, will mark the first time a vehicle carrying astronauts into orbit has launched from U.S. soil since the retirement of the space shuttle in 2011.
Read our full story for details on the recent training milestones. The photos below chronicle training events in March, including images of Hurley and Behnken wearing their SpaceX-built spacesuits.
NASA has announced that Astrobotic, Intuitive Machines and OrbitBeyond won contracts to deliver science instruments and technology demonstration payloads to the moon’s surface in the first of a series of robotic missions preceding a human return to the moon.
The SpaceX Dragon cargo ship loaded with supplies, crew provisions, new science experiments and an experimental expandable module for the International Space Station arrived Sunday morning for rendezvous, capture and berthing.