UAE astronaut's homecoming: Sultan AlNeyadi's 17-hour journey to Earth decoded

Astronauts splashed down in the Atlantic Ocean near Florida following a 17-hour journey; they were then escorted by the US teams for health check-ups


Waheed Abbas

  • Follow us on
  • google-news
  • whatsapp
  • telegram

Top Stories

Published: Sun 3 Sep 2023, 9:02 PM

Last updated: Mon 4 Sep 2023, 9:06 PM

The UAE astronaut Sultan AlNeyadi returned to Earth on Monday at 8.17 am local time from the International Space Station after spending six months in space, conducting various scientific experiments.

AlNeyadi and other astronauts splashed down in the Atlantic Ocean near Florida following a 17-hour journey. They were then escorted by the US teams for health check-ups.

As the UAE’s second astronaut slid out of the Dragon spacecraft, he smiled and waved at the people.

Here is how AlNeyadi and other astronauts reached the Earth from the ISS.

How much time it took to reach Earth?

It took Sultan AlNeyadi and the Crew-6 team around 17 hours to reach from the International Space Station to the Earth.

Where did they land on Earth?

The astronauts landed in the Atlantic Ocean near Florida.

How many astronauts accompanied Sultan AlNeyadi?

AlNeyadi was accompanied by astronauts Stephen Bowen and Woody Hoburg and Roscosmos cosmonaut Andrey Fedyaev.

When did the crew begin preparations to return to Earth?

The crew began preparation to return to the Earth many days before the due date. When embarking on the journey, the crew onboard the ISS bid farewell to the returning astronauts.

What was the first step?

Sultan AlNeyadi and others donned their SpaceX spacesuit inside the Dragon spacecraft before the spacecraft undocked from the International Space Station to begin its journey. The spacecraft detached from the ISS at a very slow pace of around 12-15 centimetres per second.

What was the maximum speed of the spacecraft?

Once the spacecraft reached a safe distance from ISS, it turned on departure phasing burns to ensure no damage was done to the Station and the remaining crew. It encircled the orbit at 28,800 kilometres per hour speed.

How much does spacecraft speed slow down to?

In the next stage, the trunk was detached from the Dragon spacecraft. As it entered the orbit, the speed slowed down dramatically from 28,000 km to around 560 km per hour for a smoother landing.

When were parachutes deployed?

In the next phase, parachutes were deployed just before the touch-down of the spacecraft in order to lessen the impact on to capsule and the crew upon landing.

What after it successfully splashed down?

A recovery vessel was sent to retrieve the crew and the capsule from the Atlantic Ocean with the help of support vessel Megan in the early morning hours on Monday.

Where will the crew go after landing?

The four-member crew were flown to the medical bay where they were undergoing medical checks by specialists.


More news from Space