Christmas Turkey and Fruitcake On The Way To Space Station

Michele Stevens
December 9, 2018

Twenty years ago this week, Cabana commanded the shuttle mission that carried up the first USA part of the space station.

There was an initial mishap on takeoff as the SpaceX booster missed its landing zone on the ground, ending up in the sea instead.

A SpaceX Dragon cargo craft launches aboard a Falcon 9 rocket to deliver supplies and equipment to the International Space Station from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Cape Canaveral, Florida, U.S., December 5, 2018. Moreover, SpaceX expects to begin launching space station crew in the following year.

The mission comes days after India fired a rocket carrying 31 satellites into space.

If weather conditions hold, the launch is scheduled for Wednesday at 1:16 p.m. EST from Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, according to NASA.

About 10 minutes after the launch, the spacecraft reached its preliminary orbit, then deployed its solar arrays, starting multiple thruster firings to reach the space station.

Later on, SpaceX confirmed second stage engine cutoff and successful deployment of four microsats and the upper and lower free flyer with additional payloads for SSO-A. At the moment, SpaceX is really inspired with his success against models of Falcon 9, and will probably continue his experiments with the rocket - however, it remains only to wait for that.

A SpaceX rocket carrying 64 small satellites lifted off from California on Monday, marking the first time the same Falcon 9 rocket has been used in three space missions.

SpaceX founder Elon Musk has made reusability a major goal. The landing marked the first time SpaceX had flown a first stage three times.

The Dragon space capsule that flew on Wednesday was used once before, on a supply mission in February 2017.

Watch on NASA TV below, or at NASA's website, or via SpaceX's own webcast.

When the Dragon arrives, it will join five other spacecraft already at the station.

In January next year, the Dragon capsule will depart the ISS, bringing back to Earth 4,000 pounds of research, hardware and crew supplies.

Astronaut Anne McClain, also from NASA, will monitor telemetry during the spacecraft's approach.

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