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October 31 2012

Private SpaceX Capsule Lands After Historic Mission to Space Station

NASA's first commercial cargo flight ended with a splash today (Oct. 28), when the SpaceX Dragon capsule landed after a landmark mission to the International Space Station.

The unmanned Dragon space capsule, built by the U.S. company Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX), splashed down into the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Southern California at 3:22 p.m. EDT (1922 GMT), ending a three-week visit to the orbiting laboratory.

Dragon began its descent with a de-orbit burn at 2:28 p.m. EDT (1828 GMT), after departing the station at 9:29 a.m. EDT (1329 GMT) as both spacecraft sailed 255 miles (410 kilometers) above Burma. The station's crew used the outpost's robotic arm to release the spacecraft.

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