Monday, March 4, 2013

Dragon to Dock Space Station- NASA

Managers of private US company SpaceX and of the International Space Station (ISS) program gave the go-ahead for docking of the Dragon space freighter with the station on Sunday, NASA reported.
A Falcon 9 rocket with Dragon spacecraft blasted off from the Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on Friday. The docking was initially scheduled for Saturday, but was delayed due to the thruster failure.
“Dragon is scheduled to be captured Sunday at 6:01 a.m. EST [11.01 a.m. GMT] by NASA Expedition 34 Commander Kevin Ford and NASA Flight Engineer Tom Marshburn,” NASA said.
On Friday shortly after the launch, the spacecraft experienced a problem with its thruster pods used for orbital maneuvers, but they were all fixed later and the spacecraft successfully performed a maneuver to raise its orbit.
“The station’s Mission Management Team unanimously agreed that Dragon’s propulsion system is operating normally along with its other systems and ready to support the rendezvous two days after Friday’s launch,” NASA added.

The Dragon spacecraft is carrying 1,268 pounds (575 kg) of supplies for the space station crew and for experiments being conducted aboard the orbiting laboratory.
The space freighter is expected to dock with the Earth-facing port of the space station's Harmony module where it will remain for a few weeks while astronauts unload cargo and load the craft with 2,668 pounds (1,210 kg) of Earth-bound experiment samples and equipment.

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