SpaceX Is No Longer Building New Crew Dragon Spacecraft

Abdul Ghani

After four Dragon spaceships, it should be over. The Starship is a priority in SpaceX's plans. SpaceX wants to focus even more on the development of the Starship and will therefore no longer build any more Dragon spacecraft. The company told the Reuters news agency.

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The Dragon spacecraft Endeavor pictured is the first of four Crew Dragons.Image by NASA

Two Dragon freighters and three Crew Dragon spacecraft are currently in service: Endeavor, Resilience, and Endurance. Another spaceship, Freedom, is scheduled to arrive in April, and another freighter later this year.

However, spare parts are still being built to maintain and overhaul the reusable Dragon spaceships. SpaceX would also be able to build new Dragons should the need arise. For the current plans, however, the fleet of seven Dragon capsules should be sufficient for crew and cargo.

Five flights are planned for each Dragon, although the final number depends on the results of examinations of the condition of the capsules after each flight. As Hans Königsmann, who was then responsible for flight safety at SpaceX, said in 2020 before the first crewed flight, there could also be fewer flights if unexpected defects occurred or more flights if the investigations turned out better than expected. First and foremost, SpaceX wants to avoid having to build and maintain too large a fleet of spacecraft.

There are as many dragons as there are space shuttles

Without the freighters, the fleet of Crew Dragon spaceships is as large as the space shuttle fleet of Atlantis, Columbia, Challenger, Discovery, and the Endeavor built after the Challenger disaster. However, the space shuttles could hardly remain in orbit for more than two weeks, while the Dragon spacecraft can dock with the ISS for more than half a year for long-term missions.

Four Dragon flights are planned for this year. In April, Axiom-1 is the first purely private crew to fly to the ISS, and the fourth and fifth regular crew as well as a cargo mission to supply supplies to the ISS. In total, SpaceX plans 60 flights in 2022, more than one flight per week. A number of new missions have been added due to the discontinuation of the Soyuz rockets due to Russia's attack on Ukraine.

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Member Of Freelancers Union (USA), Freelance Writer!, and Digital Creator. Ghani Mengal is an enthusiast Freelance blogger and digital marketer. His content has been published and featured on many popular blogs, websites, and publications. Including TeelFeed, LifeHack.org, Data-Driven Investor, TextSniper, Scientific Publication The Predict, The Startup, The Ascent, Heart Affairs, Illumination, And The List goes on.

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