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SpaceX's Dragon V2 Manned Spacecraft: How it Works (Infographic)

Details of SpaceX's Dragon V2 manned spacecraft.
The new capsule would carry 7 astronauts to the International Space Station. (Image credit: by Karl Tate, Infographics Artist)

Revealed on May 29, 2014, SpaceX's Dragon Version 2 capsule can carry a crew of seven astronauts to the International Space Station. The reusable Dragon is designed to last for up to 10 flights before needing significant refurbishment. The capsule lands on the ground using its 16,000-pound thrust SuperDraco rocket engines and landing legs, with parachutes also on board as a backup.

Dragon V2 opens its nosecone to reveal its docking hatch for mating with the International Space Station. The capsule seats seven astronauts. A control panel is folded out of the way until needed. A steering joystick and physical buttons for critical functions occupy the center section of the control panel.

For landing, Dragon uses its eight SuperDraco rocket engines to touch down at a designated landing field.

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Karl Tate
Karl's association with SPACE.com goes back to 2000, when he was hired to produce interactive Flash graphics. Starting in 2010, Karl has been TechMediaNetwork's infographics specialist across all editorial properties.  Before joining SPACE.com, Karl spent 11 years at the New York headquarters of The Associated Press, creating  news graphics for use around the world in newspapers and on the web.  He has a degree in graphic design from Louisiana State University. To find out what his latest project is, you can follow Karl on Google+.