SpaceX's 20th station shipment arrives with candy, science

SpaceX's 20th station shipment arrives with candy, science
In a time exposure, a SpaceX Falcon is launched from Cape Canaveral, Fla., as seen from Viera, Fla., Friday night, March 6, 2020. The Falcon rocket blasted off with 4,300 pounds (1,950 kilograms) of equipment and experiments for the International Space Station. Just minutes later, the spent first-stage booster made a dramatic midnight landing back at Cape Canaveral, its return accompanied by sonic booms. (Tim Shortt/Florida Today via AP)

A SpaceX cargo ship arrived at the International Space Station on Monday, delivering the company's 20th batch of gear and treats.

The Dragon capsule reached the orbiting lab after launching late Friday night. NASA astronauts Andrew Morgan and Jessica Meir used the station's robot arm to capture the spacecraft.

The 4,300-pound (1,950-kilogram) shipment contains and equipment, as well as special goodies for the three-person crew aloft for months: grapefruit, tomatoes, Skittles, Reese's Pieces and Hot Tamales.

This is the last of SpaceX's original-style Dragons. All future ones are designed to carry either cargo or crew, and will dock automatically rather than require robot-arm assistance. SpaceX has been sending up station cargo since 2012 and plans to start launching NASA astronauts this spring.

From 260 miles (418 kilometers) up, Meir congratulated SpaceX on its many milestones, including the fact this is the third flight for this particular Dragon. Spacecraft and rocket recycling, she noted, is "the more that will be paramount to the future of spaceflight."

The Dragon will remain at the orbiting lab for a month before returning to Earth with science specimens.

  • SpaceX's 20th station shipment arrives with candy, science
    In this image taken from NASA video, NASA astronauts Andrew Morgan and Jessica Meir use the International Space Station's robot arm to capture the Dragon capsule Monday, March 9, 2020. The Dragon capsule reached the orbiting lab on Monday after launching from Cape Canaveral, Florida, late Friday night. It is SpaceX's 20th shipment to the space station. (NASA via AP)
  • SpaceX's 20th station shipment arrives with candy, science
    A time exposure from Viera, Fla., shows the launch of a SpaceX Falcon from Cape Canaveral, Fla., Friday night, March 6, 2020. The rocket blasted off with 4,300 pounds (1,950 kilograms) of equipment and experiments for the International Space Station. Just minutes later, the spent first-stage booster made a dramatic midnight landing back at Cape Canaveral, its return accompanied by sonic booms. (Tim Shortt/Florida Today via AP)
  • SpaceX's 20th station shipment arrives with candy, science
    In a time exposure from Cocoa Beach, Fla., a SpaceX Falcon rocket leaves a long trail after launch Friday, March 6, 2020, from Cape Canaveral, Fla. The two shorter streaks are from the first-stage booster firing on its return for a landing at Cape Canaveral. (Malcolm Denemark/Florida Today via AP)

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