Astronauts return to Earth after spending 6 months in space

Four astronauts aboard a SpaceX Dragon Crew capsule returned to Earth early Sunday, splashing down off Panama City early Sunday, a NASA Livestream showed.

Boats were retrieving the spacecraft and crew after their six-month mission aboard the International Space Station.

The crew reported they were feeling well, NASA said.

The capsule splashed down at 2:56 am (0656 GMT) in the dark in the Gulf of Mexico off the Florida coast after a six-and-a-half-hour flight from the ISS, images relayed by NASA’s WB-57 high-altitude research aircraft showed.

Astronauts Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover, Shannon Walker and Japan´s Soichi Noguchi went to space last November as the crew on the first fully operational mission to the ISS aboard a vehicle made by Elon Musk’s SpaceX, which has become NASA’s favored commercial transportation partner.

Seven astronauts remained on the ISS including a new crew of four who arrived on a different SpaceX craft last week.

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