10/10/2012 07:12 BST | Updated 10/12/2012 05:12 GMT

SpaceX Dragon Docks With International Space Station (VIDEO)

The first private commercial delivery in space has been made at the International Space Station.

Shipping charge? About a billion dollars.

The Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) Dragon was captured by the ISS and its Canadarm2 robotic arm on Thursday, after it launched from Cape Canaveral on 8 October.

The craft will dock fully with the space station later on Thursday, and unload its cargo of 453kg in food, supplies and experiments.

Among its packages is a fresh cache of ice cream (chocolate-vanilla swirl).

Space X is the first company to be paid to fly a private supply flight to the Space Statio, under a $1.6 billion deal expected to fund 12 separate missions.

When it leaves the space station in three weeks it will return from its perch 250 miles above the Earth with nearly 907kg of experiments and station equipment.

It is expected to splash down in the Pacific Ocean near California on 28 October.

The commercial mission follows a successful test in May, when the SpaceX Dragon became the first privately built craft to dock with the space station.

Another company - the Orbital Sciences Corporation - has a $1.9bn contract also to deliver cargo to the station, if a test mission scheduled unofficially for next year goes ahead as planned.

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