Just 90 seconds into its flight, the Dragon capsule fired its engines and flew to its highest orbital point before returning to Earth.
At the same time, the Falcon 9 that carried the Dragon into space, was left to spectacularly disintegrate in the atmosphere.
Around 3.38pm GMT (10.38am EST), just eight minutes after launching, the Dragon splashed down in the Atlantic Ocean.
SpaceX founder Elon Musk said: “As far as we can tell thus far, it’s a picture-perfect mission. It went as well as one can possibly expect.
“This is a reflection of the dedication and hard work of the SpaceX and NASA teams to achieve this goal. Obviously, I’m super fired up. This is great.”