- Obama’s regulatory agenda will cost U.S. economy $143B next year: report
- Patriot Act author on James Clapper: Fire, prosecute him
- Russia P.M. Medvedev: No amnesty for political prisoners
- Michigan GOP Senate hopeful reminds government is the ‘servant’
- Christmas, by Congress: Members mull a 15-cent tax on trees
- U.S. unemployment falls to five-year low of 7 percent; 203K jobs added
- World mourns Nelson Mandela and celebrates his life; burial set for Dec. 15
- Bill O’Reilly reminds: Nelson Mandela ‘was a communist’
- John Boehner says GOP should support gay candidates: ‘I do’
- Grass-Whopper: Pan-fried cricket burgers go over big in New York City
Tamed Dragon supply ship arrives at space station
Question of the Day
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — A privately owned Dragon capsule arrived at the International Space Station on Sunday, delivering a ton of supplies with high-flying finesse after a shaky start to the mission.
The Dragon’s arrival was one day late but especially sweet — and not because of the fresh fruit on board for the station astronauts who snared the capsule.
SpaceX, the California-based company founded by billionaire Elon Musk, had to struggle with the Dragon following its launch Friday from Cape Canaveral. A clogged pressure line or stuck valve prevented thrusters from working, and it took flight controllers several hours to gain control and salvage the mission.
In the end, the Dragon approached the orbiting lab with its 1-ton load about as smoothly as could be expected, with all of its thrusters, or little maneuvering rockets, operating perfectly. The capture occurred as the two spacecraft zoomed 250 miles above Ukraine.
“As they say, it’s not where you start, but where you finish that counts,” said space station commander Kevin Ford, “and you guys really finished this one on the mark.”
He added: “We’ve got lots of science on there to bring aboard and get done. So congratulations to all of you.”
Among the items on board: 640 seeds of a flowering weed used for research, mouse stem cells, food and clothes for the six men on board the space station, trash bags, computer equipment, air purifiers, spacewalking tools and batteries. The company also tucked away apples and other fresh treats from an employee’s family orchard.
The Dragon will remain at the space station for most of March before returning to Earth with science samples, empty food containers and old equipment.
This is the third time, however, that a Dragon has visited the space station. The previous two capsules had no trouble reaching their destination. Company officials promise a thorough investigation into what went wrong this time; if the thrusters had not been activated, the capsule would have been lost.
Mr. Ford said everything about Sunday’s rendezvous ended up being “fantastic.”
“There sure were some big smiles all around here,” NASA’s Mission Control replied from Houston.
The actual anchoring of the Dragon to the space station, 2½ hours after its arrival, also unfolded without a hitch.
“The Dragon is ours!” Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield announced via Twitter.
- Bill OReilly reminds: Nelson Mandela was a communist
- Bradley Manning, as Chelsea Manning, pens thank-you to MLK from prison
- Activists urge Obama to go rogue, sidestep Congress
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- Spike in battlefield deaths linked to restrictive rules of engagement
- NAPOLITANO: Pope Francis should be saving souls, not pocketbooks
- Kill team: Obama war chiefs widen drone death zones
- Pope Franciss colorful past: Gods nightclub bouncer
- 'Hunger Games' delivers Obama's message on income inequality
- MOVIE REVIEW: 'Out of the Furnace'
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
The Constitution: Every issue, every time. No exceptions, no excuses. And how to get from here to there.
Why can’t humans just be free to be humans?
Get in the middle of all the action inside and outside the boxing ring.
Find the latest news and happening that effect those in the Washington D.C., Northern Virginia and Maryland Metro region.
White House pets gone wild!