The SpaceX Dragon spaceship lifted off from Cape Canaveral at 5:42 a.m. Friday, June 29. According to NASA, it’s SpaceX’s 15th mission for commercial resupply services.
In 2012, Dragon became the first commercial spacecraft in history to deliver cargo to the International Space Station and safely return cargo to Earth, a feat previously achieved only by governments.
On Friday, the spacecraft was carrying 5,900 pounds of research equipment, cargo and supplies to support hundreds of investigations currently happening aboard the International Space Station’s laboratory.
Research materials aboard the SpaceX Dragon include Mobile Companion, the first form of artificial intelligence on the space station. The Crew Interactive Mobile CompanioN (CIMON) is designed to help astronauts with their jobs and to create a feeling of talking to a crew mate, and playing with a Rubik cube.
ECOSTRESS, short for ECOsystem Spaceborne Thermal Radiometer Experiment on Space Station, will measure how much water plants need and how they respond to stress.
Rodent Research-7 will look at how the microgravity environment of space affects the community of microorganisms in the gut. The study seeks to support development of countermeasures to protect astronaut health during missions, as well as to improve the treatment of immune, metabolic and sleep disorders on Earth.
The Angiex Cancer Therapy will test effects of vascular-targeted agents on normal blood vessels. Results may create a model system for designing safer drugs, targeting cancer tumors and helping pharmaceutical companies design safer vascular-targeted drugs.
Live coverage of the rendezvous and capture will air on NASA Television beginning at 5:30 a.m. Monday, July 2. Installation coverage is set for 9 a.m.