Quelle: SpaceX, NASA
SpaceX Crew Dragon set for splashdown, but don't expect to see much of fiery re-entry
The first SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule to reach the International Space Station is set for its early Friday departure and Atlantic Ocean splashdown, but aside from webcasts, space fans likely won't see much in person.
After a 2:31 a.m. departure from the ISS, the uncrewed capsule will dart around the Earth several times before its final trajectory: across the United States from the Pacific Northwest to the Southeast, then a splashdown about 200 miles off the coast of Florida at 8:45 a.m.
Viewers along the path might be able to see some phases of the re-entry process, which slows the spacecraft down from the 17,000 mph needed to maintain its low-Earth orbit and creates a fireball due to atmospheric friction.
"This will likely begin over the Pacific and could possibly be seen by people in the Southwest," said Daniel Batcheldor, head of aerospace, physics and space sciences at Florida Institute of Technology in Melbourne. "The glow will fade as the spacecraft slows down. At that point the spacecraft will be falling straight though the atmosphere at its terminal velocity."
Before splashdown, Crew Dragon will deploy massive parachutes to slow down further. This process, however, also won't be visible from the coast due to the distance. A video stream, which will be hosted here at floridatoday.com, will have live coverage of the process.
From there, SpaceX's Go Searcher ship will recover the capsule, hoist it on board and return it to Port Canaveral for processing. That will likely be the best opportunity for the public to see the capsule.
Quelle: Florida Today