NASA astronaut Victor Glover left Earth last week on the SpaceX spacecraft Crew Dragon and headed for planet orbit. Within hours, Glover and the other three crew members reached the International Space Station (ISS) peacefully.
Glover is the first black astronaut to fly a 6-month mission to the space station (no black man has ever been on the ISS in such a long time). He recently posted on Twitter a video taken from a spacecraft 400 kilometers from Earth, which he took while the spacecraft was still taking them to the ISS.
The video shows the earth hanging in black space, with its thin blue atmosphere and clouds moving over the oceans. Imagine how impressive it is when you see all this clearly.
The Glover mission, called the SpaceX Crew-1, is the first in which the Crew Dragon spacecraft, and the SpaceX capsule in general, are used for active missions, not just experiments. In May of this year, SpaceX, the space research company, went down in history as the first commercial business to launch astronauts into Earth orbit.
Now Glover and the rest of the crew can view our blue planet on a regular basis – this perspective often changes astronauts’ perceptions of our planet and life on it. This is called the “overview effect”.
NASA astronaut Edgar Mitchell, who once set foot on the moon, said: “At this time you want any politician to grab your hand in a cache, drag it a million miles from the planet and say, ‘Look at this, you idiot.’