LOS ANGELES, March 8 (Xinhua) -- American spacecraft Crew Dragon undocked from the International Space Station (ISS) early on Friday, and is scheduled to return to earth hours later.
The spacecraft of U.S. private spaceflight company SpaceX undocked from the ISS at 2:32 a.m. Eastern Time (0732 GMT). It slowly maneuvered away from ISS into an orbital track that will return it to earth. The spacecraft will parachute to a splashdown in the Atlantic Ocean at around 8:45 a.m. Eastern Time (1345 GMT).
Before the undocking, ISS crew members closed and locked Dragon's hatch on Thursday afternoon.
Crew Dragon, designed to fly astronauts to the ISS, was rocketed into orbit last Saturday morning for its debut unmanned flight. It successfully docked with the space station on Sunday, and remained docked for five days before departing on Friday.
The demonstration mission, called Demo-1, is the first flight test of a space system designed for humans built and operated by a U.S. commercial company through a public-private partnership.