A few hours ago, the SpaceX Dragon 2 spacecraft blasted off atop a Falcon 9 rocket from the Kennedy Space Center in its CRS-25 (Cargo Resupply Service 25) mission, also referred to as SPX-25. After almost exactly 12 minutes it separated successfully from the rocket’s last stage and went en route. This is the 25th mission for the Dragon/Dragon 2 spacecraft to resupply the International Space Station with various cargoes and then return to Earth, again with various cargoes.
The Dragon 2 spacecraft’s cargo is more than 2,600 kg (more than 5,800 lbs) between the pressurized and the non-pressurized section. There are about 376 kg (almost 830 lbs) of food and other supplies for the International Space Station crew but most of the cargo consists of instruments, hardware, and various other materials needed for science experiments and research conducted aboard the Station.
The Earth Surface Mineral Dust Source Investigation (EMIT) developed by NASA aims to measure the composition of dust in the arid regions of the Earth and its movements caused by winds. Over the course of a year, dust movements will be mapped to better understand the effects it can have on air quality, vegetation, weather and climate, and even the human population.
DynaMoS is an experiment that aims to examine the influence of microgravity on microorganisms living in the soil. In particular, the study concerns microbial communities that decompose chitin, a natural carbon polymer on Earth and one of the main components of the exoskeleton of many arthropods, especially insects.
Genes in Space-9 is a platform that aims to produce proteins in microgravity without using specialized cells. The results could be very useful to produce medicines, vaccines, and medical and environmental tools for future space missions.
Biopolymer Research for In-Situ Capabilities aims to examine the influence of microgravity on the production of an alternative to concrete produced using organic material and materials such as lunar or Martian dust. The results will help find the best materials to build habitats on the Moon or Mars.
This Dragon 2 cargo spacecraft is the same one used in the CRS-21 and CRS-23 missions and is the first on its third mission. Its arrival at the station is scheduled for Saturday: around 15.20 UTC, it’s scheduled to dock with the Station with an automated maneuver.