SpaceX and NASA delayed 4 astronauts returning from ISS, but the rescheduled flight is 12 hours quicker - meaning less time wearing diapers designed to cope with a leaky toilet
- NASA and
SpaceXdelayed the return of four astronautsfrom the ISSfrom Sunday to Monday.
- The rescheduled flight is much shorter than the initial, planned trip - eight hours instead of 20.
SpaceX and NASA have delayed a flight returning astronauts from the International
The journey time from the ISS back to Earth onboard a Crew Dragon capsule can vary. SpaceX's first crewed flight, called Demo-2, took just over 19 hours to return in August 2020, per Space, while the Crew-1 mission back to Earth in May lasted nearly seven hours.
The rescheduling means the astronauts will spend less time in special diapers they have to wear because of a toilet leak in the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule.
The four astronauts on the
This is because the Crew-2 astronauts discovered a toilet leak in the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule, which has been docked at the ISS since it flew the crew there in April, Insider's Morgan Mcfall-Johnsen reported in October.
The toilet on the spacecraft will be out of order for the return trip, Stich said in the press briefing, leaving astronauts to resort to "other means," according to a Space report. "It's a short mission coming home," he added, per Space.
SpaceX's first all-civilian mission, Inspiration4, first found an issue with the Crew Dragon spacecraft's toilet during a three-day trip in space in September.
A toilet tube carrying urine into a storage tank came loose beneath the spaceship's floor and leaked onto a fan that generates suction to direct the waste in the right direction. The fan then sprayed urine underneath the spaceship's floor, but urine didn't get into the cabin.
SpaceX asked Crew-2 astronauts, who have been at the ISS since spring, to check for the same issue. The astronauts confirmed contamination in the space capsule, SpaceX official Bill Gerstenmaier said in a press conference in October, per The New York Times.
This isn't the first time SpaceX and NASA have had to postpone crewed missions recently.
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