SpaceX’s first space tourists have returned to Earth, splashing down inside the Crew Dragon spaceship

It’s not the first time this particular capsule, named Resilience, has weathered such a fall: It’s the same ship that flew SpaceX’s first full astronaut crew to the International Space Station for NASA last year, then brought them home in May. Recovery crews in boats swarmed the scene to pull the spaceship out of the water and help the travelers climb out.

For now, SpaceX is the only entity that can launch people to orbit from the US. In October, it’s set to launch another astronaut crew for NASA – the third of six Crew Dragon flights the agency has purchased.

In the meantime, SpaceX ended the US’s nine-year hiatus in domestic human spaceflight in May 2020, when Crew Dragon flew two NASA astronauts to the ISS. NASA has also tapped SpaceX to land its next astronauts on the moon.

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