Canadarm tames Dragon

Space Launch Complex 40 is illuminated by a Falcon 9 rocket as it lifts off at 8:35 p.m. EDT...

Space Launch Complex 40 is illuminated by a Falcon 9 rocket as it lifts off at 8:35 p.m. EDT carrying a Dragon capsule to orbit on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, Oct. 7, 2012. REUTERS/NASA/Handout

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:14 AM ET

Canada's iconic robotic arm on the International Space Station made commercial space history Wednesday morning when it successfully grappled the Dragon space capsule.

"Here's something to make us proud," the Canadian Space Agency wrote on Twitter Wednesday morning, posting a picture of the Canadarm capturing Dragon.

Dragon, an unmanned space capsule built by California-based SpaceX, has made the voyage to the ISS once before, but that was just a test run.

"Looks like we've tamed the Dragon. We're happy she's onboard with us," ISS commander Sunita Williams said.

Now that U.S. shuttles have been retired, NASA has turned to private business to restock the station so it can continue its space exploration.

Today's successful capture was a major victory for the future of the commercial space industry.

Dragon brought more than 450 kg of science experiments and cargo to the ISS, and will return to Earth with even more, including astronauts' urine and blood samples.

It will spend three weeks at the station before being released and parachuting into the Pacific.

SpaceX hopes to one day turn its cargo vessels into ships that can carry astronauts to the space station.

The Canadarm grabbed Dragon 400 km above the Pacific, just west of Baja, Calif.

Dragon launched from Cape Canaveral, Fla., two days prior.

 


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