Screenshot via SpaceX
SpaceX has launched an online simulator for you to try docking the Crew Dragon spacecraft with the International Space Station (ISS).
The spacecraft is the first human-boarding spaceship that the company has ever made, and the virtual simulation shows the “actual interface” the astronauts themselves use onboard, per TechCrunch. The controls are touchscreen for the astronauts, which goes to show the advances of space travel in recent years.
The main challenge, however, is attempting to understand the spaceflight and the controls that let you dock safely. You can control the orientation of the spacecraft and opt for vertical and horizontal positions. There are arrows on both sides and a toggle, which lets you switch from large to small movements. The feedback on the functions is displayed in the central targeting reticle.
The main goal is to get the figures on the targeting reticle green, which will eventually allow you to dock the capsule.
NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine claimed to have completed the physical simulator on his “first try” in 2019, which is not a surprise as he is a former Air Force pilot, after all.
In the same vein, SpaceX’s Demo-2 mission will be launching two NASA astronauts to the ISS on 27 May 2020, and you can envision being one of them with this tool.
May 12, 2020
[via Engadget, cover image via SpaceX]