NASA, SpaceX pull off historic launch

SpaceX Crew Dragon vehicle in space
credit: NY Times, NASA/ SpaceX

After a delay of several days due to weather conditions, NASA and SpaceX made history today with a successful launch of the Crew Dragon vehicle atop the Falcon 9 rocket.

The launch took place at 3:23pm eastern time (12:23pm out here on the west coast). The two astronauts aboard the vehicle, Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley, are now well on their 19 hour journey to dock with the International Space Station, where another US astronaut and two Russian cosmonauts await their arrival.

This is a historic mission – the first time the US government is launching a manned rocket from US soil since the final Space Shuttle flight in 2011. It’s part of a new public-private partnership called the Commercial Crew program, a joint effort between NASA and SpaceX.

On top of this, after the Falcon 9 detached from the Dragon vehicle, the rocket had a successful vertical landing back on earth.

What a time to be alive!

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