Understand the moments of tension that happened about 8 hours after the launch of Crew-2
A UFO (Unidentified Flying Object) has been identified with a possible collision course with the Crew Dragon capsule carrying four astronauts to the International Space Station. The detection of the object happened about eight hours after the launch that took place on April 23, 2021.
First of all, it is worth mentioning that the astronauts arrived safe and sound at the Space Station, however, this generated moments of tension minutes before the crew fell asleep.
The detection occurred about 45 minutes before the object encounter, and the Crew Dragon crew was warned about 15 minutes before the possible impact . Due to the lack of time for maneuvers, astronauts are instructed to stay safe in their seats and wait for more information.
“As science, we identified a very close last-minute encounter with a very small distance error window with Dragon,” SpaceX’s Sarah Gilles told the crew. “That being so, we need you to put on your attire and settle into your seats.”
After a few minutes, during the TCA (Time of Closest Approach), nothing happened. It was later realized that the object passed 45 km from the capsule during this maximum approach.
Until then, the object was identified as space junk, however, as it was not identified, Kelly Humphries, a NASA spokeswoman, issued a statement saying that the object is being treated as “unidentified” by the North American Space Agency.
NASA will continue to investigate the object’s origin, and for now, astronauts Shane Kimbrough, Megan McArthur (NASA), Thomas Pesquet (ESA) and Akihiko Hoshide (JAXA) are just left with a different story during their journey to the ISS.