CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida (AP) – Space astronauts added another parking space to the International Space Station on Wednesday.
NASA astronauts Nick Hague and Andrew Morgan successfully installed a dock port delivered by SpaceX last month. It will be used by SpaceX and Boeing after launching astronauts in the orbital lab at the end of this year or early next year.
The two had to contend with old, hard cables to get the power and data flowing to the port. "Slow and steady," Morgan said. They also attached reflectors for navigation.
This is the second docking port of the Crew Capsule Station. The first was attached three years ago. The newest port is a replacement for the one that was destroyed during the SpaceX launch crash in 201
Since its space shuttle retired in 2011, NASA has been limited to Russian astronaut launch missiles at the space station. While US companies have been delivering since 2012, Cape Canaveral's crew remains on hold.
SpaceX released its first Dragon capsule without anyone on board in March. The capsule was destroyed the following month during a Florida engine test. Despite the setbacks, SpaceX is still aiming to squeeze in its first test flight with astronauts by the end of the year.
Boeing intends to release its Starliner capsule without a crew this fall, followed by a test flight with a crew sometime early next year.  It was the third space path for The Hague and the first for Morgan, an army doctor who moved to the station a month ago.
Rock Documents, mission control is handed over to Morgan as work begins.
The Hague mother delivers home-cooked treats to flight controllers in Houston in the middle of a planned six-hour space shuttle.
"I heard she was busy in the kitchen yesterday," Hague said. "I hope everyone is happy. I'm jealous."
"Well," the Mission Control replied, "we have a certain zeal for what you do, so I would say it's a fair trade."
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