SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft just fired up its emergency escape engines
Today, SpaceX fired up the engines on its new passenger spacecraft, the Crew Dragon, during a ground test in Cape Canaveral, Florida — paving the way for the company to perform a crucial test flight of the vehicle in the months ahead. If that test flight goes well, SpaceX is then poised to fly humans on the Crew Dragon for the first time next year.
The engines that SpaceX ignited today are part of the Crew Dragon’s emergency abort system — a crucial part of the spacecraft that will activate if there’s ever a catastrophe during launch. The Crew Dragon is designed to travel into space on top of one of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rockets, but if for some reason that rocket fails in mid-air, the emergency engines embedded in the hull of the spacecraft…