The depictions of the Crew Dragon’s 2014 design from multiple angles. The visible changes that occurred since then include the removal of the hatch and back windows.
DM-1 Dragon capsule at SpaceX’s LC-39A horizontal combination Facility.
Depictions of the Crew Dragon’s 2019 design as in Crew Dragon Demo-1 launch configuration.
Depictions of the Crew Dragon’s 2019 design as in the Crew Dragon Demo-1 mission.
Variants of Crew Dragon
There are two variants: Crew Dragon and Cargo Dragon. Crew Dragon was initially called DragonRider and it had been intended from the start to support a crew of seven or a mixture of crew and cargo. it’s able to perform fully autonomous rendezvous and docking with manual override ability using the NASA Docking System (NDS).
From the start of the event process, SpaceX planned to use an integrated pusher launch escape system for the Dragon spacecraft.
SpaceX originally intended to land Crew Dragon ashore using the LES engines, with parachutes and an ocean splashdown available within the case of an aborted launch.
Precision water landing under parachutes was proposed to NASA as “the baseline return and recovery approach for the first few flights” of Crew Dragon. The propulsive landing was later canceled, leaving ocean splashdown under parachutes as the only option.
As of 2011, the Paragon Space Development Corporation was assisting in developing Crew Dragon’s life network.
In 2012, SpaceX was in talks with Orbital Outfitters about developing space suits to wear during launch and re-entry. Each crew member wears a custom spacesuit fitted for them.
Crewed Dragon flights
The suit also can provide cooling for astronauts during normal flight. For the SpX-DM1 test, a test dummy nicknamed Ripley was fitted with the spacesuit and sensors. The spacesuit “is made up of Nomex” a fireplace retardant fabric almost like Kevlar.
At a NASA news conference on 18 May 2012, SpaceX confirmed their target launch price for crewed Dragon flights of US$160 million, or about $23 million per seat if the maximum crew of seven is aboard and NASA orders a minimum of four Crew Dragon flights per annum.
This contrasts with the 2014 Soyuz launch price of $76 million per seat for NASA astronauts.
In October 2014, NASA selected the Dragon spacecraft together of the candidates to fly American astronauts to the International space platform under the Commercial Crew Program. SpaceX plans to use the Falcon 9 Block 5 launch vehicle for launching Dragon 2.
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