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SpaceX Sends 20,000 Sea Creatures to ISS

SpaceX’s CRS-22 Cargo Dragon mission was successful Thursday. The capsule is expected to dock at the International Space Station early Saturday morning.

The mission marked SpaceX’s fourth Dragon spacecraft launch in six months, which included the transport of both crew and cargo to ISS.

Thursday’s cargo included some interesting items. In addition to 7,200 pounds of food for astronauts at the station, SpaceX also delivered thousands of tiny sea creatures to be used for experiments. Around 20,000 tardigrades, better known as water bears, will be studied to understand the stress caused by space. Tardigrades can survive in drastic environments, such as the vacuum of space.

The delivery will also include supplies for a plaque-fighting toothpaste experiment and a new powerful array of solar panels.

SpaceX’s cargo business is booming. If all goes to plan, the company could complete as many as 12 Dragon missions in the next 24 months.

Watch the launch broadcast below.

Electroman

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So the trunk opens up and the satellite is deployed by some deployment mechanism? And the other cargo destined for ISS stays intact and continues its journey to ISS?

.. interesting
 
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bxr140

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So the trunk opens up and the satellite is deployed by some deployment mechanism? And the other cargo destined for ISS stays intact and continues its journey to ISS?

Its likely (I don't know for sure on Dragon) that the cubesats are deployed after ISS docking and possibly even after undocking. That's typically how its done anyway, and the idea is that you don't want the secondary mission to screw up the primary mission.

Think of the dispenser itself as a mailbox that can eject mail on command. Its about that size, and there's a spring mechanism inside that pushes the sat(s) out when the door pops open. Its really simple--bolt somewhere on a rocket, hook up to an initiator circuit, send command when ready, then the oor pops open and the sats get deployed.

Random Dispenser

The beauty of these things is that they can be bolted pretty much anywhere on a space vehicle (from second stages to GEO satellites) and they leverage a launcher's mass margin to a particular orbit, so they're kinda freebies. (Some launchers will actually provide free rides to universities and such). Generally you'll dispensers on any launch that's going to a stable LEO orbit, where 'stable' is high enough that drag doesn't quickly pull the sats down, because cubesats generally don't have ∆V capability. (Or in other words, not a Starlink launch that has a super low perigee)
 
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Electroman

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Its likely (I don't know for sure on Dragon) that the cubesats are deployed after ISS docking and possibly even after undocking. That's typically how its done anyway, and the idea is that you don't want the secondary mission to screw up the primary mission.

Think of the dispenser itself as a mailbox that can eject mail on command. Its about that size, and there's a spring mechanism inside that pushes the sat(s) out when the door pops open. Its really simple--bolt somewhere on a rocket, hook up to an initiator circuit, send command when ready, then the oor pops open and the sats get deployed.

Random Dispenser

The beauty of these things is that they can be bolted pretty much anywhere on a space vehicle (from second stages to GEO satellites) and they leverage a launcher's mass margin to a particular orbit, so they're kinda freebies. (Some launchers will actually provide free rides to universities and such). Generally you'll dispensers on any launch that's going to a stable LEO orbit, where 'stable' is high enough that drag doesn't quickly pull the sats down, because cubesats generally don't have ∆V capability. (Or in other words, not a Starlink launch that has a super low perigee)
Thanks you. But I doubt any sats will be released when the Dragon is docked with ISS, especially the ones that can't do a Delta V. You don't want an object orbiting that close to ISS.
 

bxr140

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Thanks you. But I doubt any sats will be released when the Dragon is docked with ISS, especially the ones that can't do a Delta V. You don't want an object orbiting that close to ISS.

Did you watch that YouTube link? ;)

Many cubesats have been deployed from ISS. When you run the monte carlos the separation between the ISS and the deployed sats pretty much just keeps increasing over time. Typically the cubesats get pulled down pretty quickly and the ISS is being constantly(ish) boosted up.
 

Grendal

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1622133210540.png
 
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Electroman

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It appears that more than half the payload that goes to ISS is just to keep it operational - people, their basic needs, machinery to keep ISS humming. Like any Govt entity :)