Elon Musk founded SpaceX back in 2002 with the hopes of one day going to colonizing Mars and begin the plans for space tourism. Since then the company has made many great strides in reaching that goal.
In August of 2012 SpaceX signed a contract with NASA and together they would design the "next generation of U.S. human spaceflight capabilities."
After many test flights and a couple of brief trips to the International Space Station, SpaceX was ready to send humans into orbit. On May 30th Robert Behnken and Doug Hurley climbed aboard the Dragon Endeavor and were launched into space. On May 31st they reached to ISS where they orbited the Earth for 62 days.
While they were up there they joined up with Chris Cassidy who has been aboard the station since April.
Today the crew of the Dragon Endeavor came back to Earth. The spacecraft was scheduled to splashdown into the Gulf of Mexico just off the coast of Pensacola, Fl. At around noon, pacific time, the mission had become a success. The two astronauts made a safe landing and were immediately met by two small boats that picked them up and take them back to land. Upon landing, mission control's first message to the astronauts was, "Thank you for flying SpaceX."
It had been nearly a decade since Americans had been among the stars. Atlantis made its maiden voyage in 1985 and in July of 2011, it went on its 33rd and final mission where it orbited the Earth a total of 4,848 times by the end. On July 21st, 2011, Atlantis landed safely at the Kennedy Space Center for the final time.
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