SpaceX announced that it has now successfully completed 13 consecutive successful tests of their Mark 3 parachute design, developed in cooperation with Airborne System, for the Crew Dragon spacecraft after fixing a few initial problems. This parachute system is crucial because it’s the same one that will be eventually responsible for bringing astronauts safely back down to Earth.
SpaceX team has completed 13 successful tests in a row of upgraded Mark 3 parachutes for Crew Dragon. Most recent test demonstrated the parachute system’s ability to land the spacecraft safely in the unlikely event that one of the four main parachutes fails. pic.twitter.com/VJzDeS8UAG
— SpaceX (@SpaceX) November 3, 2019
The initial three parachutes failed to open properly, which meant the SpaceX team had to rethink the design, and thus the Mark 3 parachutes were created. They first carried out a pad abort test using these new parachutes back in September, and the latest test involved demonstrating its ability to safely land the Crew Dragon when just three of the four parachutes open.