Axiom Mission 1’s four-member crew, including Montreal entrepreneur Mark Pathy, arrived at the International Space Station on Saturday aboard the first all-private charter flight to the ISS.
SpaceX launched its Crew Dragon spacecraft from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Friday for the 10-day mission, with passengers expected to spend eight days on the space station.
Pathy financier and philanthropist, Ohio real estate and tech entrepreneur Larry Connor, and Israeli businessman Eytan Stibbe each paid US$55 million for the rocket flight and stay on the ISS. Joining them is retired NASA astronaut Michael Lopez-Alegria, who works for Houston-based startup Axiom Space Inc.
The mission includes a series of scientific experiments. Pathy said he would help test something called holoportation, a new technology that uses virtual reality for communication.
He and a colleague from field mission control will use VR headsets to share their experiences. Pathy will also participate in surveys of the Earth from space.
The spacecraft was scheduled to dock at the space-facing port of the Harmony module around 7:45 a.m. ET. However, the approach and “soft capture” to the docking port was delayed approximately 45 minutes while NASA resolved an issue with obtaining a video feed from Dragon.
WATCH | NASA Dragon Docking Live Stream: