Private space company SpaceX sent 4 civilian astronauts into orbit around the Earth on Wednesday evening.
The astronauts are aboard a Dragon capsule named “Inspiration 4” in which they will use to ascend to an altitude of 575 km – further from Earth than even the International Space Station.
The launch window started at 8:02 p.m. EDT and while it was open for approximately five hours the Falcon 9 rocket carrying Inspiration 4 to space launched at the very instant the window opened.
As the astronauts achieved orbital velocity, the first stage successfully landed on one of SpaceX’s several drone ships.
About 13 minutes after launch, Inpiration 4 separated from the second stage of the Falcon 9 and started its 3-day orbital mission.
The Inspiration 4 Crew
The crew is the first all-civilian crew to orbit the Earth.
The astronauts will be in orbit for approximately three days during which they will perform science experiments.
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