A team of four astronauts exploded from Cape Canaveral, Florida inside a SpaceX Crew Dragon last weekend. The team successfully reached the International Space Station only 27 hours later.
Sunday night, the launch became a historic moment. It was the first operational crew change mission that delivered astronauts to the space station from American soil since the retirement of the Space Shuttle program in 2011.
And it was a smooth ride, as the Japanese Aviation Agency (JAXA) astronaut Soichi Noguchi explained during a press conference aboard the space station.
“The dragon is the best, short answer,” he said, comparing the experience to driving NASA̵
Riding the dragon
Noguchi became only the third person to drive all three spacecraft, which Associated Press reports.
“This feels like you’re actually inside a kite that brings us up into space, so that was a feeling,” the Japanese astronaut said.
Once in a lifetime
During the same press event, first-time astronaut Victor Glover, the crew dragon pilot, described the extended feeling of four GS (four times the force per unit mass due to the earth’s gravity) as “truly amazing”.
“I’ve seen lots of pictures,” Glover said. “But when I first looked out the window at Earth, it’s hard to describe. There are no words […] It was a great feeling that was once in a lifetime. ”
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