Beginning at 4:45 p.m. EDT, NASA will provide live coverage of a news conference following a successful splashdown and recovery of NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley in the SpaceX Crew Dragon “Endeavour” to complete the SpaceX Demo-2 test flight.
Participants in the news conference from NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston are:
- NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine
- Gwynne Shotwell, president and chief operating officer at SpaceX
- Steve Stich, manager of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program
- Joel Montalbano, manager of NASA’s International Space Station Program
- SpaceX Crew-1 astronauts Mike Hopkins, Victor Glover, and Shannon Walker of NASA, and Soichi Noguchi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)
Dragon Endeavour splashed down off the coast of Pensacola, Florida, at 2:48 p.m. EDT to complete a 64-day mission since their launch May 30 from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The Crew Dragon hatch was opened at 3:59 p.m., and Behnken and Hurley exited the spacecraft onto the Go Navigator for initial medical checks before returning to shore by helicopter. Once returned to shore, both crew members will immediately board a waiting NASA plane to fly back to Ellington field in Houston.
Hurley and Behnken arrived to the International Space Station May 31 and spent 62 days supporting science and research aboard the orbiting laboratory as part of Expedition 63.
Demo-2 is SpaceX’s final test flight and is providing data on the performance of the Falcon 9 rocket, Crew Dragon spacecraft and ground systems, as well as in-orbit, docking, splashdown, and recovery operations. The data will inform NASA’s certification of the SpaceX crew transportation system for regular flights carrying astronauts to and from the space station. SpaceX is readying the hardware for the first rotational mission that will occur following NASA certification, which is expected to take about six weeks.