Coming home

Crew-3 Splashdown: Watch SpaceX’s Crew Dragon Endurance splash into the Gulf of Mexico

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Last November, four astronauts blasted into space on board the SpaceX Crew Dragon Endurance.

Together, they made up the third crewed mission to the ISS aboard a Crew Dragon spacecraft, which flew as part of NASA’s Commercial Crew program.

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For six months, the astronauts lived and worked on board the ISS.

They conducted research on a variety of topics and performed several spacewalks.

Their mission ended as Crew-3 fell back to Earth on May 6 in a splashdown in the Gulf of Mexico.

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Here are 6 moments from the early-morning event:

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6. Parachutes deployed so that the capsule could make a careful, slow descent.

5. Here’s the moment the capsule hit the water.

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4. Endurance bobbed in the ocean for a bit until boats came to retrieve it.

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3. The bright lights of rescue boats dot the water as they surround the capsule.

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NASA/ESA

2. Operators lifted the capsule onto a boat and positioned it so that the doors could open for the crew.

1. Teams pulled the astronauts one by one through the entrance of the capsule.

The Crew-3 cohort was replaced by four astronauts as part of Crew-4, a mission that departed for space on April 27.

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They will spend 6 months aboard the ISS, conducting hundreds of experiments in space and living in microgravity like the team that came before them.