The Crew Dragon spacecraft (C206 Endeavor) of the first manned SpaceX Demo-2 mission with NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley successfully returned to Earth from the ISS inside SpaceX's Crew Dragon capsule.
The flight took about 19 hours. At 2:48 PM ET, the ship splashed down in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Pensacola, Florida, marking the historic flight's successful completion. The final part of the mission with the ship's return was broadcast on the SpaceX YouTube channel.
The Crew Dragon capsule with the astronauts successfully parachuted down and splashed down in the Gulf of Mexico. The crew was met and picked up by a special rescue vessel, Go Navigator.
SpaceX Demo-2 is the final stage of certification before starting the regular full-scale operation of the Crew Dragon spacecraft. With the crew of the first manned mission SpaceX Demo-2, the Crew Dragon took off on a Falcon 9 rocket on May 30 and successfully docked to the ISS after a 19-hour flight. In total, Crew Dragon spent two months at the ISS.
SpaceX develops the crewed spacecraft Crew Dragon as part of the NASA Commercial Crew Program, aiming to support commercial space transport companies. The spacecraft can accommodate from 4 to 7 people and spend up to 200 days docked to the ISS.
Previously, NASA authorized the re-use of Crew Dragon to deliver people to the ISS. According to the plan, this particular ship (C206 Endeavor) will be used as part of the future Crew-2 mission, scheduled for spring 2021.
In the future, SpaceX plans to use Crew Dragon not only to deliver crews to the ISS but also for tourist flights into space. To date, SpaceX has announced two such missions, both planned for 2021.
More than 1 million viewers simultaneously watched the return of Crew Dragon on NASA and SpaceX YouTube channels. By comparison, the launch of Crew Dragon in May was simultaneously watched by over 4 million YouTube viewers.