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Launch Webcast: See SpaceX Launch Dragon Capsule Saturday

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posted on May, 18 2012 @ 08:35 PM
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Got some time to spare tommorow? Then watch this historic blastoff online. This is the first-ever flight of a private vehicle to the International Space Station.
Live Webcast & Mission Status Center



Nasa will be watching closely at this test flight. This is the way that they are planning to carry out future cargo missions to the ISS. The hope is that eventually also crew will be transported using this service.


NASA has awarded SpaceX a $1.6 billion contract to develop Dragon and fly 12 cargo-delivery missions to the space station. If tomorrow's flight goes smoothly, the first of these should launch in early fall.

Overall, NASA is planning eight Falcon 9 flights in 2013, including two supply runs to the space station and six missions for commercial and government partners, such as communications satellite launches.

SpaceX is one of two private spaceflight companies NASA has hired to ferry cargo to the station — the other is Orbital Sciences Corp. of Dulles, Va. This outsourcing plan is intended to allow NASA to focus on pursing travel beyond low-Earth orbit, including manned missions to asteroids, the moon and Mars.
Source


Pictures of Falcon 9 rocket rolling out to launch pad


Additional pictures on the pad


Rocket facts

Made in America: All structures, engines, avionics, and ground systems designed, manufactured and tested in the United States by SpaceX.

Falcon 9 with a Dragon spacecraft is 48.1 meters (157 feet) tall. The vehicle from the COTS 2 flight is capable of producing one million pounds of thrust in a vacuum.

Cutting-edge technology makes Falcon 9 the vehicle of choice for commercial and government customers. SpaceX has approximately 40 Falcon 9 missions on the manifest.
Source


Spacecraft facts


Dragon is 4.4 meters (14.4 feet) tall and 3.66 meters (12 feet) in diameter. The trunk is 2.8 meters (9.2 feet) tall and 3.66 meters (12 feet) wide. With the solar panels fully extended, the vehicle measures 16.5 meters (54 feet) wide.

Although this demonstration mission carries only cargo, Dragon was designed from the outset with crew- carrying capability in mind; SpaceX is in the process of developing necessary systems for transporting crew, such as seating, a launch escape system, and environmental control and life support system
Source


Additional links
Press Kit PDF
Mission Objectives PDF
SpaceX Manifest PDF


Launch timeline
Source

I will surely be watching tommorow and further in the future to see how this develops. Maybe the private sector is the way to go as more creative and intelligent minds get a crack at space exploration.
edit on 18-5-2012 by ReleaseThePressure because: picture embed & layout correction




posted on May, 18 2012 @ 10:41 PM
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I intend to get up and watch this, but I consider it an ironic joke.
NASA supposedly goes out of the heavy lifter business (no shuttle and no plans)
and here this puny little rocket is going to take up the slack?
What happens when they really need to haul some freight up there?
Oh, I forgot about the massive triangle I saw in '98 that surely can at least fly to low earth orbit...maybe a bit further? BTW: who do you suppose owns that thing?



posted on May, 19 2012 @ 02:21 AM
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reply to post by Aliensun
 


That would be Elon Musk. He is one of the founders of Paypal amongst other things.


Musk is CEO, majority owner, and head rocket designer at SpaceX.

Entrepreneur of the year 2007

Elon Musk Wiki


And also, do you want to elaborate on this triangle? You got my attention.
edit on 19-5-2012 by ReleaseThePressure because: question



posted on May, 19 2012 @ 02:27 AM
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Live Countdown on official SpaceX website

The trajectory can also be seen here along with the latest tweets from SpaceX and CEO


SpaceX One hour until the official SpaceX launch webcast. Watch at spacex.com #DragonLaunch
5 minutes ago



posted on May, 19 2012 @ 03:40 AM
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T -15 minutes

Everything appears to be running on time.



posted on May, 19 2012 @ 03:41 AM
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Originally posted by Aliensun
I intend to get up and watch this, but I consider it an ironic joke.
NASA supposedly goes out of the heavy lifter business (no shuttle and no plans)
and here this puny little rocket is going to take up the slack?
What happens when they really need to haul some freight up there?
Oh, I forgot about the massive triangle I saw in '98 that surely can at least fly to low earth orbit...maybe a bit further? BTW: who do you suppose owns that thing?


The design is scaleable. The plans are there.

www.spacex.com...

They simply need to demonstrate the small stuff before being funded for the large.



posted on May, 19 2012 @ 04:01 AM
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That was the greatest anticlimax in years.

3...2....1.... we have... liftofff no we don't!

Now in recyclemode... some 72 hours to wait

These guys know how to cliffhang dont they?

edit on 19/5/12 by D.Wolf because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 19 2012 @ 04:09 AM
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Better a ground abort than a mid flight abort.

Be interested to know why, sensor fault or engine fault?

Fingers crossed they figure it out before the 22nd.



posted on May, 19 2012 @ 04:09 AM
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Today's launch ended very anticlimactic. Apparently one of the engines had a paramater out of bounds which led to an abort sequence.

Because of the 1 second window they had today the launch won't continue until a later day.

The prospective date and time is Tuesday May 22nd at 12:44:34 AM Pacific / 3:44:34 AM Eastern / 07:44:34 UTC



posted on May, 19 2012 @ 04:14 AM
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Originally posted by D.Wolf
That was the greatest anticlimax in years.

3...2....1.... we have... liftofff no we don't!


Tell me about it. I was so excited.

My screen recorder was running which led to my PC overheating and shutting down. There i was scrambling back to get it on.

Fortunately i got it back on when it was T- 2 minutes. Unfortunately we all know what happened next
edit on 19-5-2012 by ReleaseThePressure because: layout + correction



posted on May, 19 2012 @ 04:36 AM
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According to one of their latest tweets:

slightly high combustion chamber pressure on engine 5. Will adjust limits for countdown in a few days.


also

There will be a short briefing at 3:30 AM PT / 6:30 AM ET on NASA TV nasa.gov/ntv



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