SpaceX launched its Falcon 9 rocket from the Kennedy Space Center on Saturday May 30th. The milestone event was the first astronaut launch from U.S. soil in almost a decade and the first launch of the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule with crew.
Within a few hours of the start of their 19-hour journey to the International Space Station, which is due to arrive on Sunday, May 31, at 7:27 a.m. [local time], NASA astronaut Bob Behnken and his colleague Doug Hurley gave space fans an observation Livestream of the historic mission A quick look around the Crew Dragon.
Behnken pointed out the three touch screens of the Crew Dragon and described the interior of the capsule as "very different" from the Space Shuttle, which had thousands of switches and buttons and numerous displays.
Hurley and Behnken will use the capsule's touch screens to monitor the automatic docking process with the ISS. However, the screens also play an important role when there is a problem, when the spaceship approaches the space station and the astronauts have to perform the maneuver manually.
Behnken left his place to show us more of the inside of the capsule, including the hatch and four windows.
"We all have a window through which we can see what's going on outside," said the astronaut. "It was exciting on the climb when we saw the arm turn away from the pad and then we both knew we would start today."
Behnken said he received a request to do a back flip to demonstrate weightlessness in the Crew Dragon, although the confines of the room meant he had to settle for a "side spin" instead.
Oh, and also look at the "stowaway" who managed to accompany the two astronauts on their journey to the ISS.