Cargo spacecraft Cargo Dragon of the U.S. company SpaceX, docked on Monday with the International Space Station (ISS), brought its crew a set of treats to the Christmas table, said the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
In particular, fried turkey with cranberry sauce, macaroni and cheese, potato casserole, cherry-blackberry juice, cookies and cappuccino with vanilla flavor were brought into orbit.
The docking of the “truck” to the Harmony module of the American ISS segment was carried out at 13:40 U.S. Eastern Coast time (21:40 Moscow time). He delivered to the station about three tons of food, as well as equipment and materials for up to 250 scientific experiments by the crew of the station. In an airtight compartment, the ship also brought a commercial Nanoracks Bishop Airlock module, designed, among other things, to launch private mini-satellites, as well as to dispose of debris and waste from the ISS.
As NASA reported, on Sunday the Falcon 9 launch vehicle of SpaceX company, which was launched from the spaceport at Cape Canaveral, successfully injected cargo spacecraft Cargo Dragon into the Earth orbit.
This is the 21st flight of this “truck” to the ISS and the first mission of a modified version of the spacecraft (Cargo Dragon 2), which is now able to deliver to the ISS by 20% more cargo, and can also independently dock with the station without the traditional hand grip – manipulator Canadarm2 for subsequent docking, as the previous ships.
The new cargo ship is designed for five flights to and from the ISS instead of three in the missions of the previous “trucks” Cargo Dragon 1. It will be able to stay in the station for 75 days, compared to 40 days of the previous version.
The launch of the ship in Cargo Dragon 2 version was carried out as part of the second contract between NASA and the company SpaceX to supply the station.
At present, Cargo Dragon is the only spacecraft to supply the ISS, which is able to return goods to Earth.
Cargo Dragon will be part of the ISS for about a month. In this case, for the first time to the ISS will be simultaneously docked two U.S. cargo ships.
Then it will be removed from orbit, and its descending capsule will be brought to the Atlantic. The ship will bring the results of experiments carried out by the ISS crew with the total weight of over 2.3 tons.
From October 2012 to March 2020 SpaceX carried out 20 launches of Cargo Dragon cargo ships to ISS. One of them (in 2015) failed due to the Falcon 9 launch vehicle accident.
At present, the crew of the ISS consists of its commander Cosmonaut “Roscosmos” Sergei Ryzhikov, astronaut Sergei Kud-Sverchkov, NASA astronaut Kathleen Rubins, as well as American astronauts Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover, Shannon Walker and astronaut of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency JAXA Soichi Noguchi who arrived to the station on the newest American manned ship Crew Dragon of the SpaceX company on November 17.