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Watch Space X Test Fire Its Dragon 2 Spaceship For Astronauts

22/01/2016 14:55 GMT | Updated 22/01/2016 14:59 GMT

Space X's Dragon spaceship isn't just for sending packed lunches up to the International Space Station. The private space company also plans to turn it into one of the most advanced launch vehicles for astronauts as well.

The Dragon 2 (Dragon Crew) capsule is already well into testing and the company has just uploaded a new video showcasing what is by far and away its coolest feature.

Full speed and slow mo of our Dragon 2 hover tests

Posted by SpaceX on Thursday, 21 January 2016

This hover test video shows the Dragon's propulsive thrusters which would allow the Dragon to take passengers safely from the ISS to the Earth's surface without having to ditch in the sea.

Instead the thrusters would kick in and land the spacecraft vertically using an autopilot similar to that found on Space X's reusable Falcon 9 rocket.

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Those thrusters serve a dual-purpose though as they're also the emergency thrusters for an aborted take-off. Should the crew find themselves in extreme danger either on the launchpad or on their way up into orbit they can turn the capsule into an escape pod.

space x dragon

The thrusters would kick in propelling the craft away from the danger at around 345mph and then either land using the thrusters or by using emergency parachutes.

As cool as the demo looks this isn't just for show, Space X actually plans to start sending astronauts into space using Dragon 2 as early as 2017.