Skip to comments.SpaceX Falcon 9 Launch Live Thread (05/22/2012) 03:44 EDT)
Posted on 05/21/2012 4:47:45 PM PDT by KevinDavis
click here to read article
The tread pattern itself is Morse code for "JPL" (·--- ·--· ·-··)
Proudly (and sadly) my daughter is a systems engineer on Orion, which Dragon is seeking to replace.
Talk about mixed emotions.
Her husband was laid off last year from the Constellation program, but now has a good job in private industry.
If NASA cancelled Orion, our daughter will probably be glad to stay home & raise grandbabies for us.
Why don't they use GPS?
Steve, watch this Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover Animation, about the mission it’s only 11 minutes long.
Open the screen and turn up the volume.
It’s very cool
That was cool.
No solar panels nor wind turbines on top. Al Gore will be deeply saddened.
Crossing fingers landing goes ok in August...Getting at 2000 pound vehicle on the surface...everything must work perfect..
The video sent back from this vehicle should be spectacular.
...will be spectacular, to say the least! I hope it all goes smooth and successful - I'm sure thousands of us will be glued to the TV watching.
Ron if ya didn’t see the 11 minute video in #162 you should watch it. The engineering developed to get this vehicle on the surface is worth watching.
Saw the vid - very impressive!
Yes it is.
“The boomers engineered, developed and launched Mars rovers like this, nearly as big as a car, which will be roving around the surface of Mars in a couple of months.”
And the Xers will actually get people back in space. Not too shabby for the generation that people have dumped on as ‘worthless’. Once that heavy gets launched, they would have done something that boomers never accomplish wrt payloads.
You Xers as you call yourselves better get updated, as there are already half a dozen people currently in space.
Try to keep up.
Not outside of LEO.
We haven’t been outside of LEO - since the Boomers were almost 30. Boomers came of age and since then spaceflight has been regressing every since.
Xers come of age - and we’re fixing the first big mistake. Best of all - we’re making money off it. Odd that for the ‘worthless generation’, learning from our elders - the ones who actually went out to space.
There’s going to be a gap in Lunar astronauts. People are going to ask, “why were there no boomers on the moon”. Ask them. :)
Now you suggest the are not in space far enough for you?
You should really get a hobby and get away from your generational hysteria.
LEO is space as a wading pool is to the ocean.
Dragon/ISS docking tomorrow morning early.
Email from SpaceX:
SpaceX to Webcast Dragon’s Visit Space Station
SpaceX is planning to webcast Dragon’s historic attempt to visit the space station live tomorrow morning starting at approximately 4:30 AM PT / 7:30 AM ET. Times may change so check back for updates.
Update from SpaceFlightNow.com:
FRIDAY, MAY 25, 2012
0155 GMT (9:55 p.m. EDT Thurs.)
The International Space Station mission management team just gave a “go” for integrated operations between the space station and Dragon spacecraft.
Integrated operations will begin around 3 a.m. EDT (0700 GMT), after which the space station control team in Houston will have authority over the progress of the mission. SpaceX controllers in California will continue sending commands to Dragon after approval from Houston.
We will have live streaming video and comprehensive updates on Dragon’s progress beginning at 2 a.m. EDT (0600 GMT).
THURSDAY, MAY 24, 2012
1430 GMT (10:30 a.m. EDT)
All systems are in good shape for tomorrow’s rendezvous and berthing with the International Space Station, according to NASA and SpaceX officials.
The commercial Dragon spacecraft flew about 8,000 feet directly beneath the space station this morning after astronauts and engineers successfully proved the ship’s relative GPS navigation system and tested a communications link between the craft and the station crew.
In a news conference from Houston and SpaceX headquarters in California, officials said today’s activities went as expected.
Dragon fired its thrusters to enter a looping trajectory around the space station, eventually arriving at a point below and behind the complex - much like it did earlier today - to start a second rendezvous with the outpost.
Update from SpaceX website:
SUCCESSFUL LAUNCH KICKS OFF SPACEX’S HISTORIC MISSION
May 22, 2012
Hawthorne, CA Today, Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) successfully launched its Falcon 9 rocket carrying a Dragon spacecraft to orbit in an exciting start to the mission that will make SpaceX the first commercial company in history to attempt to send a spacecraft to the International Space Station something only a handful of governments have ever accomplished.
At 3:44 a.m. Eastern, the Falcon 9 carrying Dragon launched from SpaceXs launch pad at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. Now Dragon heads toward the International Space Station. On that journey it will be subjected to a series of tests to determine if the vehicle is ready to berth with the station.
Broadcast quality videos, including video inside of the SpaceX factory, may be downloaded at vimeo.com/spacexlaunch and high-resolution photos are posted at spacexlaunch.zenfolio.com.
At a press conference held after the launch, SpaceX CEO and Chief Designer Elon Musk began, I would like to start off by saying what a tremendous honor it has been to work with NASA. And to acknowledge the fact that we could not have started SpaceX, nor could we have reached this point without the help of NASA Its really been an honor to work with such great people.
The vehicles first stage performed nominally before separating from the second stage. The second stage successfully delivered the Dragon spacecraft into its intended orbit. This marks the third consecutive successful Falcon 9 launch and the fifth straight launch success for SpaceX.
We obviously have to go through a number of steps to berth with the Space Station, but everything is looking really good and I think I would count today as a success no matter what happens with the rest of the mission, Musk said.
He continued by expressing his gratitude to the more than 1,800 SpaceX employees. People have really given it their all. Describing the scene inside of SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne, California, he said, We had most of the company gathered around SpaceX Mission Control. They are seeing the fruits of their labor and wondering if it is going to work. There is so much hope riding on that rocket. When it worked, and Dragon worked, and the solar arrays deployed, people saw their handiwork in space operating as it should. There was tremendous elation. For us it is like winning the Super Bowl.
Explaining the significance of the day, Musk stated, This mission heralds the dawn of a new era of space exploration, one in which there is a significant commercial space element. It is like the advent of the Internet in the mid-1990s when commercial companies entered what was originally a government endeavor. That move dramatically accelerated the pace of advancement and made the Internet accessible to the mass market. I think were at a similar inflection point for space. I hope and I believe that this mission will be historic in marking that turning point towards a rapid advancement in space transportation technology.
This is SpaceXs second demonstration flight under a 2006 Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) agreement with NASA to develop the capability to carry cargo to and from the International Space Station. Demonstration launches are conducted to determine potential issues so that they might be addressed; by their very nature, they carry a significant risk. If any aspect of the mission is not successful, SpaceX will learn from the experience and try again.
Mission Highlights: During the mission, Dragon must perform a series of complex tasks, each presenting significant technical challenges (dates subject to change):
May 22/Launch Day: SpaceXs Falcon 9 rocket launches a Dragon spacecraft into orbit from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
May 23: Dragon orbits Earth as it travels toward the International Space Station.
May 24: Dragons sensors and flight systems are subjected to a series of complicated tests to determine if the vehicle is ready to berth with the space station; these tests include maneuvers and systems checks in which the vehicle comes within 1.5 miles of the station.
May 25: NASA decides if Dragon is allowed to attempt berthing with the station. If so, Dragon approaches. It is captured by stations robotic arm and attached to the station, a feat that requires extreme precision.
May 25 - 31: Astronauts open Dragons hatch, unload supplies and fill Dragon with return cargo.
May 31: After approximately two weeks, Dragon is detached from the station and returns to Earth, landing in the Pacific, hundreds of miles west of Southern California.
Don’t forget to check these two websites out!
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.