On Monday morning, four astronauts donated their flight cases and boarded their named Dragon spacecraft. Expansion.
But they did not come home. NASA astronauts Mike Hopkins, Victor Clover and Shannon Walker, and Japanese astronaut Sochi Nokuchi were also preparing to move the Crew Dragon spacecraft.
Within 38 minutesThe International Space Station’s Harmony module supports the spacecraft seamlessly up to 60 meters from large space. Under the power of his Draco nodes Expansion He then prepared to dock with another port in the Harmony block.
During this autonomous training Expansion The port of the “forward” module was moved to the “peak” port. The reason for the reconstruction was that another dragon was expected to come to work in a few weeks – to carry four more astronauts to the space station, as well as a cargo dragon’s feed mission.
This cargo mission, piloted by SpaceX, will carry large solar panels to the space station in its trunk. The space station’s large robotic arm is required to land this cargo kite Zenith port to handle the space station installation panels. This arm could not reach the “trunk” of the spacecraft, which was anchored in the forward port.
So on Monday, Expansion This was moved to the port of Angel. This will allow the next group to begin work before April 22 to anchor in the forward port. Then Expansion The CRS-22 cargo will be able to depart at the end of April and anchor freely at Zenith port.
We hope all of this is a little confusing, but the main feature of this is that SpaceX kites cause some traffic jams in orbit. Of course, NASA is very pleased to have an American spacecraft, which provides the station with cargo and personnel.
So if the whole process was autonomous, why did all four team members have to go in the vehicle? Hopkins, Clover, Walker and Nokuchi, for the Crook-1 mission Expansion He has a way home. Although the crew never touched down the flight controls, they had to stay aboard the spacecraft in an emergency – though not impossible – and had to intercept the maneuvers and return to Earth. Fortunately, this did not happen.
Image courtesy NASA TV