SpaceX successfully launches Dragon supply capsule towards Space Station

spacex 1 SpaceX successfully launches Dragon supply capsule towards Space Station

SpaceX has launched its second Dragon supply capsule towards the International Space Station, once again proving the growing importance of private business in space exploration.

SpaceX has launched its second Dragon supply capsule towards the International Space Station, once again proving the growing importance of private business in space exploration.

 
A Falcon rocket took the Dragon into space, successfully surviving even a problem with one of its nine first-stage engines. There was no test flight, lowering costs and acting as an example of the confidence put in the technology by the company's CEO, billionaire Elon Musk, co-founder of PayPal and Tesla Motors.
 
The Dragon, named in defiance of detractors who considered SpaceX's plans “fantasy,” carries 1,000 of important cargo, including scientific materials and experiments, and, of course, supplies for the three astronauts living in the International Space Station, such as some much-coveted icecream.
 
spacex 2 SpaceX successfully launches Dragon supply capsule towards Space Station
 
The capsule will reach the Station by Wednesday, and once unloaded it will begin another journey back to Earth three weeks later, with a new cargo of close to 500 blood and urine samples from the astronauts. This is important, as no other supply capsules can withstand the heat of re-entering the Earth's atmosphere, making SpaceX a vital player.
 
The company secured a contract with NASA worth $1.6 billion for 12 resupply missions after its first successful Dragon launch earlier this year. It is also looking to convert its capsules into vessels that can carry astronauts to the Station within three years, which will end the current undoubtedly pride-killing practice of flying in Russian Soyuz spacecraft.
 
SpaceX expects the next Dragon to take flight in January.
 
Source and Image Credit: Associated Press