US astronauts pack up for rare splashdown return in SpaceX capsule

US astronauts pack up for rare splashdown return in SpaceX capsule


CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — Two U.S. astronauts about to make the first splashdown return in 45 years said Friday they’ll have seasick bags ready to use if needed.

SpaceX and NASA plan to bring Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken back Sunday afternoon in the company’s Dragon capsule, aiming for the Gulf of Mexico just off the Florida Panhandle. Flight controllers are keeping close watch on Hurricane Isaias, expected to stick to Florida’s east coast.

Hurley said if he and Behnken get sick while bobbing in the waves awaiting recovery, it won’t be the first time for a crew. Astronauts returning in the early 1970s from Skylab, NASA’s first space station, did not feel well following splashdown, Hurley noted.

Feeling sick “is the way it is with a water landing,” he said during the crew’s final news conference from the International Space Station.

This will be SpaceX’s first splashdown with astronauts on board, ending a two-month test flight that began

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