Nasa SpaceX crew returns: US astronauts splash down and say it was ’quite an odyssey’

Two Nasa astronauts safely made the first splashdown return to earth in 45 years when their capsule landed in the Gulf of Mexico.

Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken landed their Crew Dragon spacecraft off the coast of Pensacola, Florida shortly before 3pm local time (8 pm UK) on Sunday.

The astronauts said that “all was well” on board the craft after the splashdown. They had been in space for two months.

“On behalf of the SpaceX and Nasa teams, welcome back to Planet Earth. Thanks for flying SpaceX,” SpaceX mission control said upon splashdown.

They had chosen the location because of the potential threat posed by Hurricane Isaias in the Atlantic.

Astronauts last made an ocean landing in July 1975 as part of the Apollo mission.

The splashdown was their final step in a mission intended to test SpaceX’s human spaceflight system, examining its launch, docking and recovery operations.

It was also the culmination of the first mission in which a commercial spacecraft was used to take astronauts to the space station.

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