Last Saturday (26), SpaceX launched a Dragon capsule to the International Space Station (ISS) via the CRS-26 resupply mission. Among the payloads carried by the spacecraft was a Brazilian satellite dedicated to research in the ionosphere (more details here).
The cargo capsule launched at 3:20 p.m. Brasilia time atop a Falcon 9 rocket from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. Coincidentally, a United Airlines plane was crossing the sky at the same time. A passenger on the plane took the opportunity to videotape the launch through the window.
The video shows the rocket lifting off the ground and gaining altitude toward Earth orbit, in clear, cloudless skies, allowing a good view for the plane’s passengers. “One of the coolest things I’ve ever seen,” wrote NBC photojournalist Nick Leimbach, sharing the footage on his Twitter account.
According to the Tilt site, from the UOL portal, the plane took off from Dulles International Airport, Washington DC, at 12:25 p.m., bound for George Town, in the Cayman Islands, where it landed 3:30 p.m. later. As seen in the video, it flew over Kennedy Space Center at the exact moment of SpaceX’s launch.
Late Thanksgiving Dinner
A series of science experiments, as well as new solar panels for the ISS, were in the cargo capsule of the CRS-26 mission, which was due to launch on Tuesday (22) and was delayed due to bad weather.
If the launch had not been delayed, the spacecraft would dock at the orbital laboratory on Wednesday (23). As Thanksgiving Day, one of the most important American holidays, was celebrated on Thursday (24), an appetizing variety of special foods were also sent by the resupply mission, including ice cream, beans spicy greens, toppings, sweet corn and other traditional ones. delicacies. Although they waited a little longer to enjoy the treat, the astronauts must have been pleased with the surprise.
Speaking of food, one of the charges involves experience Vegetarian vegetable production system (Veggie), which consists of efforts to meet the need for a system of continuous production of fresh food in space. This time the fifth leg of the research has been launched, with the shipment of Red Robin dwarf cherry tomatoes.
A microscope to analyze changes in the crew’s immune system, liquid resin technology to create larger structures, equipment to capture images of astronauts’ eyes, and a system to create nutrients from food easy-to-carry space products like yogurt are other examples of science. carried away by the CRS-26 mission.
In addition to all this scientific equipment, the cargo capsule also delivered new solar panels to the space station to continue powering the orbiting complex.
The ISS backbone networks were installed during the station’s first major construction phase in the early 2000s. Over time, these structures naturally deteriorate, producing less power. All ISS arrays are operating beyond their estimated 15-year lifespan.
Called iROSA (short for something like “ISS roll solar arrays”), these panels are designed to be deployed over the primaries, so as to partially overlap the larger original structures. There are six iROSA installations planned, and astronauts have already installed two and assembled hardware for three more — those embarking on the CRS-26 mission.
Capable of generating up to 20 kilowatts of power, the new grids, working alongside the still exposed parts of the old grids, will increase the space station’s electricity supply by 20-30%. They should be installed during two spacewalks planned in the coming days.
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