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US launches first manned mission in 9 years

By Fabrice Pierre-Toussaint

Staff Writer for Telegraph Local | See my LinkedIn

US launches first manned mission in 9 years. At 3:30, SpaceX successfully launched it’s shuttle, the 24 story tall SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket propelled astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken on their 19 hour ride to the ISS (International Space Station) 

They are carried there inside the newly-designed Crew Dragon capsule, making its first flight into orbit with humans aboard.

A brief bio on the two astronauts, Doug Hurley is currently a NASA astronaut, who piloted Space Shuttle missions STS-127 and STS-135, the final flight of the Space Shuttle program. He is also an engineer and a former Marine Corps pilot.

Robert L Behnken is a NASA astronaut, engineer and a former Chief of the Astronaut Office. He holds a Ph.D in mechanical engineering and the rank of Colonel in the U.S Air Force, where he served before he joined NASA in 2000. He flew aboard space shuttle missions STS-123 and STS-130. 

The launch pad is the same one used by NASA’s final space shuttle flight, piloted by Hurley, in 2011. Since then, NASA astronauts have had to hitch rides into orbit aboard Russia’s Soyuz spacecraft. 

The previous scheduled launch on Wednesday was postponed due to bad weather around the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida.

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