reported the event as follows, ”

A SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule carrying four astronauts splashed down in the Atlantic Ocean early Friday (Feb. 9), wrapping up a record-setting private trip to the International Space Station for the company Axiom Space.

Ax-3’s Crew Dragon Freedom aced a morning landing off the coast of Daytona Beach, Florida under four main parachutes at about 8:30 a.m. EST (1330 GMT). A SpaceX recovery team swiftly reached the capsule to begin extracting its four-man crew. The three-week mission is the longest private flight for Axiom Space by SpaceX since the missions began in 2022.

“Thank you for flying SpaceX,” SpaceX’s mission control radioed to the Ax-3 astronauts. “Flying SpaceX was our pleasure,” Ax-3 commander Michael Lopez-Alegria, a former NASA astronaut, replied as the Freedom capsule bobbed in the Atlantic. “All four crewmembers are feeling well.”

Ax-3 launched atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket on Jan. 18 and arrived at the International Space Station (ISS) in the early morning hours of Jan. 20.

The mission consists of four crewmembers: Commander Michael López-Alegría, a former NASA spaceflyer who’s now Axiom Space’s chief astronaut; pilot Walter Villadei, a colonel in the Italian Air Force; mission specialist Alper Gezeravcı, the first citizen of Turkey ever to reach space; and mission specialist Marcus Wandt, an European Space Agency reserve astronaut. It is SpaceX’s first private all-European mission.”

Please use the following link for a replay of the launch and description of the mission.

(Please know these links will take you to external websites.)
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