SpaceX's Dragon capsule successfully returns from 12th ISS resupply mission

Tourists view the Morning Glory hot spring in the Upper Geyser Basin of Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming

Tourists view the Morning Glory hot spring in the Upper Geyser Basin of Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming

Undocking from space station is scheduled for 12-40 GMT.

SpaceX's Dragon cargo ship left the International Space Station (ISS) on Sunday and is returning to Earth; the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is broadcasting the journey live.

Dragon's thrusters will be fired to move the spacecraft a safe distance from the station before SpaceX flight controllers in Hawthorne, California, command its deorbit burn. NASA also sent up some ice cream for the astronauts.

A cargo ship operated by the privately-run United States aerospace company SpaceX departed the International Space Station and is returning to Earth.

For the vessel's return trip, the crew loaded the Dragon with "science samples from human and animal research, biology and biotechnology studies, physical science investigations, and education activities", NASA officials said in a statement.

"NASA and the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS), the nonprofit organization that manages research aboard the USA national laboratory portion of the space station, will receive time-sensitive samples and begin working with researchers to process and distribute them within 48 hours of splashdown", the statement said. NASA launched Dragon to the ISS from Cape Canaveral.

This is the 12th successful ISS resupply mission SpaceX has conducted using one of its Dragon cargo capsules.

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