SpaceX's Dragon crew is located next to the Falcon 9 rocket in the hangar of the 39A launch complex at the Kennedy Space Center (FL). The launch of the capsule is scheduled for January 17, 2019, which will be the first demonstration mission to the ISS
The space taxi from the company SpaceX is preparing for the first trip into orbit in less than a month. The company presented new images of the finished Dragon crew, located in the 39A complex of the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Also noticeable is the Falcon 9 rocket, which will lift the capsule during the debut mission on January 17th.
During an unmanned flight, the reusable capsule visits the ISS, stays there for several weeks and performs a parachute descent to Earth. The goal is to prove the ability of the crew version of the Dragon (Crew Dragon) to deliver astronauts to the orbital station and back to full safety. The real flight may take place in June.
SpaceX has a multi-billion dollar contract with NASA to transport astronauts to the ISS and back with Crew Dragon and Falcon 9. Also, the deal was signed by Boeing, developing the CST-100 Starliner capsule. Their first demonstration flight is scheduled for March 2019. As soon as these private space companies create uninterrupted transport to the ISS, NASA will be able to get rid of 100% dependence on Russian Soyuz spacecraft. Since July 2011, this is the only way to get to the orbital station, since the shuttle project has retired.
Crew Dragon is a modernized version of a robotic capsule for delivering cargo to the ISS, which has been shipping since 2010.
Another view of Crew Dragon at site 39A
Cargo Dragon relies on solar batteries, which unfold after the vehicle goes into space. Crew Dragon also has solar panels, but there are also new facilities for convenience, such as seats and internal touch displays.