(FOX5) – Millions watched when astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley left Earth in the SpaceX Crew Dragon on May 30th.
The first astronauts to travel into orbit in nine years are set to return to Earth on August 2nd.
The exact time and date of their landing will be determined by the weather.
Their blast off was halted due to bad Florida weather conditions on May 27th.
What’s Happening In Space?
Their historic journey to the ISS would last months and mark the first human launch in almost a decade. Behnken and Hurley have spent the last two months aboard the ISS alongside NASA astronaut Christopher Cassidy and Russian cosmonauts Anatoli Ivanishin and Ivan Vagner.
The NASA astronauts have spent their days conducting spacewalks to upgrade the station’s hardware. They have also shared images from a viewing module aboard the station.
This journey won’t be considered a success until Behnken and Hurley return home safely. The voyage home is expected to be as dangerous as the one into orbit.
If the weather permits it, the astronauts will board the Dragon on August 1st and spend one day slowly descending toward Earth. The next day, the capsule with slice back through the Earth’s atmosphere and deploy parachutes to cushion their landing in the Atlantic ocean.
If the mission is successful, SpaceX’s Crew Dragon will be officially certified for human spaceflight missions.
Behnken and Hurley’s trip named Demo-2, is considered a test flight.
NASA’s decision to set a target return date is a sign that SpaceX is on track to have a second Crew Dragon ready to fly the first operational crewed mission, named Crew-1, this fall.
The Crew-1 will be considered the first operational SpaceX mission. The second Crew Dragon trip will carry four people.
Though, NASA intends to thoroughly review the data from the Demo-2 mission before it moves forward with the second.
On Tuesday, the Falcon 9 rocket that will launch Crew-1 arrived at SpaceX’s processing facility in Florida, to undergo final preparations for the mission, said CNBC.