Skip to comments.SpaceX’s Falcon rocket is a tremendous step toward reasserting American leadership in space
Posted on 02/09/2018 9:29:23 PM PST by aquila48
The successful launch of SpaceXs Falcon powerful new rocket Tuesday ... was a tremendous step toward reasserting American leadership in space.
The Falcon Heavy is the most powerful rocket launched in the U.S. since the Apollo missions and the most powerful commercial rocket ever made. It can carry nearly 64 metric tons (141,000 pounds) into orbit. This is more than double the payload of the next-biggest rocket currently in operation.
For perspective, SpaceX says this is, a mass greater than a 737 jetliner loaded with passengers, crew, luggage, and fuel.
SpaceX owner Elon Musk also said the rocket system could launch payloads direct to Pluto and beyond without the help of a gravity assist.
When President Trump reinstated the Space Council on June 30, he challenged its members to think big in space again. The day before the new Space Council met for its first meeting on Oct. 5, Vice President Mike Pence wrote in The Wall Street Journal that the council will refocus Americas space program toward human exploration and discovery.
Specifically, the Space Council should heed Vice President Pences charge: "To achieve these goals, the National Space Council will look beyond the halls of government for insight and expertise.
The private sector has shown that the conventional wisdom of the slow-moving, risk-averse space bureaucracy is wrong.
As Dr. Robert Zubrin, president and founder of the Mars Society, wrote after the launch: Seven years ago, the Augustine commission said that NASA's Moon program had to be cancelled because the development of the necessary heavy lift booster would take 12 years and 36 billion dollars. SpaceX has now done that, on its own dime, in half the time and a twentieth of the cost. And not only that, but the launch vehicle is three quarters reusable.
(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...
"As Dr. Robert Zubrin, president and founder of the Mars Society, wrote after the launch: Seven years ago, the Augustine commission said that NASA's Moon program had to be cancelled because the development of the necessary heavy lift booster would take 12 years and 36 billion dollars. SpaceX has now done that, on its own dime, in half the time and a twentieth of the cost. And not only that, but the launch vehicle is three quarters reusable."
precisely - let private enterprise kick butt and keep the govt out of it.
It’s a Faux News story, so obviously they don’t know about other current developments in the grand global Space Race such as Rocket Lab’s 3D printed launch vehicle that just put a satellite into orbit.
They don’t know about Japan’s SS-520 “sounding” rocket that is only 20 feet tall (read: not much rocket fuel or metal+assembly costs) and just put a satellite into orbit, either.
Rutan’s venture with Virgin Galactic has put two Americans into Space, privately... and is on track to launch paying Space tourists. The innovative approach there is an aerial rocket launch from 50,000 feet.
SpaceX is to be lauded, but someone more cerbrial than Fox News needs to do it.
Maybe even a Blue Origin/Bezos mention...
Starman, and the boosters landing, was the coolest thing I’ve ever seen.
Private sector breathing some real excitement back into American space exploration.
Meanwhile NASA gov scientists say: “Global warming is real and we must do something about it.”
My family is sort of living this. Our kid will graduate as an astronautical engineer in may. His college job is on Flight Operations at NASA with a satellite that is 21 years old. Its mission was supposed to be four years and it’s still almost fully functional.
We’re excited for him and his career choice and the awesome timing he’s been blessed with.
Congrats to your boy and his parents. “:^)
Cool your rockets Southacker...
This was an article by Newt Gingrich - Faux News doesn’t write articles. The main thrust of his piece was to laud and encourage the development of space hardware by the private sector and he used the very recent successful launch by SpaceX as an example of how it can be done cheaper, faster and more creatively. He wasn’t trying to denigrate anyone.
You want to post articles about other private success story in that field, feel free to post them and help Newt spread the word.
Newt, I would be a lot more impressed if his burn out of orbit had put his rocket anywhere near his intended target. His rocket is headed nowhere in particular.
Also, It would have been nice to see him launch a full payload instead a 3500 lb sedan with a dummy inside.
Oh, one more thing, Newt, in another year and a half NASA is gonna be launching a rocket that will be about double the payload of the Falcon Heavy.
Yes I think your son got the timing right. Aerospace was in the doldrums for the past 20+ years. It’s now experiencing a renaissance that may be as exciting as the race to the moon back in the 60s.
Wish him all the best.
I detect a bit of... envy.
You don’t work for NASA, do you?
Will it be reusable?
Will it land itself?
Thanks. I have to say, I can imagine how my dad felt when he watched Neil Armstrong land on the moon.
When I saw a rocket that was as powerful as a rocket we had 50 years ago finally I thought, maybe we’re back.
When I saw those two booster rockets land simultaneously, I thought, holy crap! That’s what I’ve been talking about!
Not sure why 50 years later, our rocket technology is slightly better. In 50 years our computing technology has taken many mind boggling quantam leaps.
Just thinking out loud to people who may have an explanation.
Oh and FYI, room on the Falcon Heavy for 6 boosters. Yeah. Hows them apples.
Cause you didn’t have a South African American voracious SCIFI reader with the means to do it. (I resemble Musk in the voracious reading and being a RSA expat, but I honestly don’t have his intellect nor his means nor his stones.)
Incorrect. The space shuttle produced 7.8 million pounds of total thrust versus the Falcon 9 heavys 5.1 million pounds.
Congrats. I’m third generation engineer but couldn’t get my son to follow that path. It hurts a bit that there are no more engineers on my side of the family. But he is very happy with what he is doing.
You wrote “astronautical engineer.” Is that correct? Usually it is aeronautical engineer or aerospace engineer. Is “astronautical” a new discipline?
Congrats to your son and to you ... what a marvelous career to look forward to for him. We can’t even begin to imagine the things he will see and do.
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