SpaceX capsule completes successful first mission
WASHINGTON (AFP) - The unmanned SpaceX capsule made a safe splashdown in the Pacific Sunday after successfully delivering its first commercial payload to the International Space Station.
The capsule parachuted into the water at 1922 GMT (3.22am Singapore time) after an 18-day mission to resupply the station and was now being recovered by a team of divers, United States-based SpaceX said in a brief statement on its website.
The mission - the first of 12 planned trips in SpaceX's US$1.6 billion (S$2 billion) contract with US space agency The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (Nasa) - is a milestone for American efforts to privatise the space industry, aimed at reducing costs and spreading them among a wider group than governments alone.
The capsule delivered about 450kg of cargo to the space station and is taking home 758kg of supplies, hardware and scientific tests and results.