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Releasing the Dragon
- Video Online only
- Title Releasing the Dragon
- Released: 31/08/2018
- Length 00:02:13
- Language English
- Footage Type Music Clip
- Copyright ESA/NASA
This timelapse video shows still pictures taken from the International Space Station of the departing Dragon supply spacecraft. Played in quick succession the video displays faster than real life but in 4K resolution.
The Dragon spacecraft was released from the Station’s robotic arm at 18:38 GMT on 3 August 2018. Thrusters fired to increase its distance from the Space Station and the spacecraft started its deorbit and return to Earth, splashing down in the Pacific Ocean less than seven hours after release.
The International Space Station flies at 28 800 km/h above our planet doing a complete orbit in around 90 minutes – during release operations the sun set and rose above the horizon many times.
As Dragon faded into the distance it flew over a stormy part of Earth – lightning flashes can be seen many kilometres below.
Dragon is the only spacecraft that can return to Earth with scientific cargo aside from the Soyuz spacecraft that ferries astronauts to space and back – this flight carried over 1700 kg of cargo.