The SpaceX capsule carrying Thomas Pesquet and his three companions docked well on Saturday, April 24 in the late morning, nearly 24 hours after takeoff, at the International Space Station (ISS), according to images broadcast live by the NASA television.
“Hard Capture over, welcome to Crew-2”, declared the American astronaut Shannon Walker, current commander of the ISS. “Thank you Shannon, we are happy to be here, we will see you all in a few minutes”, replied Endeavor commander, US astronaut Shane Kimbrough.
The takeoff took place at dawn on Friday at the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, taking into space the four members of the Crew-2 mission: Frenchman Thomas Pesquet for the European Space Agency (ESA), Americans Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur and the Japanese Akihiko Hoshide.
With the success in May 2020 of its first manned test flight, Elon Musk’s private company SpaceX broke the Russian monopoly on flights to the ISS and gave the Americans back the ability to accomplish this feat, after the end of the space shuttles « Shuttle » in 2011.