Space to Ground: Gateway to the Future: 07/26/2019

Space to Ground: Gateway to the Future: 07/26/2019


WELCOME TO SPACE TO GROUND, I AM KATHRYN CLAYTON. THE LAUNCH AND CAPTURE OF SPACEX’S 18TH CARGO RESUPPLY MISSION WILL BRING MORE SCIENCE,
RESEARCH AND A NEW GATEWAY TO THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION. SPACEX-18 LAUNCHED FROM CAPE CANAVERAL ON THURSDAY. ASTRONAUTS CRISTINA KOCH AND NICK HAGUE ARE SET TO OPERATE THE ROBOTIC ARM TO CAPTURE THE DRAGON THIS WEEKEND. DRAGON IS HOLDING MORE THAN 5000 POUNDS OF CARGO INSIDE, INCLUDING SUPPLIES, CRITICAL SPARES, HARDWARE TO SUPPORT RODENT RESEARCH AS WELL AS DOZENS OF BIOLOGY, PHYSICS AND MATERIALS SCIENCE INVESTIGATIONS. DRAGON IS SET TO REMAIN AT THE STATION FOR
ABOUT A MONTH BEFORE RE-ENTERING THE EARTH’S ATMOSPHERE AND SPLASHING DOWN IN THE PACIFIC OCEAN WITH 3,300 POUNDS OF RETURN CARGO. ONE OF THE PRIMARY PAYLOADS ON THE SPACEX-18 IS THE INTERNATIONAL DOCKING ADAPTOR 3 OR IDA-3. IDA-3 REPRESENTS A GATEWAY TO THE FUTURE FOR EXPLORATION, ALLOWING AMERICA’S FIRST NEW, HUMAN RATED SPACECRAFT SINCE THE SHUTTLE. IT WILL BE THE 8TH PORT FOR A VISITING VEHICLE AND WILL ALLOW TWO COMMERCIAL CREW VEHICLES TO DOCK TO THE STATION AT THE SAME TIME. IDA-3 IS MORE SOPHISTICATED THAN PREVIOUS
DOCKING SYSTEMS AND USES LASERS AND SENSORS TO CONNECT THE STATION TO SPACECRAFTS CREATING AN AUTOMATIC ALIGNMENT AND CONNECTION. ALMOST LIKE A CAR THAT CAN PARK ITSELF! THE NEW DOCKING PORT WILL BE INSTALLED THROUGH A MIX OF GROUND CONTROLLED ROBOTIC OPERATIONS AND A SPACEWALK CURRENTLY SCHEDULED FOR NEXT MONTH. THE DOZENS OF INVESTIGATIONS SOON-TO-BE DELIVERED TO THE SPACE STATION PROVIDE OPPORTUNITIES FOR OTHER GOVERNMENT AGENCIES, PRIVATE INDUSTRY, AND ACADEMIC AND RESEARCH INSTITUTIONS TO CONDUCT MICROGRAVITY RESEARCH. HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE THE BIOROCK INVESTIGATION WHICH WILL EXAMINE THE INTERACTION BETWEEN MICROBES AND ROCKS IN MICROGRAVITY AS WELL AS PHYSICAL AND GENETIC CHANGES IN THE MICROBES. THIS INFORMATION COULD EVENTUALLY HELP EXPLORERS ON THE MOON OR MARS. THE BIOFABRICATION FACILITY WILL PROVIDE A
PLATFORM TO PRINT BIOLOGICAL TISSUES, THIS COULD BE AN IMPORTANT STEP TO 3D PRINTING
USABLE HUMAN ORGANS. GOODYEAR TIRE WILL INVESTIGATE SILICA ROLLS IN SPACE TO GAIN A BETTER UNDERSTANDING OF ITS STRUCTURES AND PROPERTIES TO IMPROVE TIRE MANUFACTURING AND PERFORMANCE. ALL OF THE INVESTIGATIONS ON SPACEX 18 REPRESENT SIGNIFICANT DISCOVERIES TO FURTHER NASA’S GOAL OF MOON AND MARS EXPLORATION. BE SURE TO TUNE INTO NASA TV FOR UPDATES AND COVERAGE OF WHATS HAPPENING ON THE SPACE STATION AND SEND US YOUR QUESTIONS USING THE HASHTAG #ASKNASA. WE’LL SEE YOU NEXT WEEK.

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