Support Just the News

Help Fund Honest Journalism


Four astronauts in SpaceX capsule return to Earth in rare nighttime splashdown

The return marks the longest-duration mission of a crewed American spacecraft, according to NASA.

Updated: May 2, 2021 - 12:18pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook


Other Media

Four astronauts returned to earth from the International Space Station, splashing down in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Florida early Sunday morning in a rare nighttime landing.

There were three Americans and one Japanese astronaut aboard the SpaceX capsule which came down in the water just prior 3 a.m., according to the Associated Press.

The outlet noted that this marked the first U.S. crew splashdown in the dark since a mission more than 50 years ago in 1968 — that mission was Apollo 8. 

"The return comes nearly six months after the crew members arrived at the microgravity laboratory and also marks the longest-duration mission of a crewed American spacecraft to date," according to NASA.

Just the News Spotlight