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View Full Version : SpaceX Launch - ISS resupply - 0955EDT 19 May 2012


brockenspectre
19th May 2012, 08:10
Just in case there are any erstwhile space geeks out there who haven't got this in the diary and aren't ready/waiting!!

Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX, of Hawthorne, Calif., on Friday targeted May 19 for the launch of its upcoming demonstration mission to the International Space Station. Liftoff time is at 4:55 a.m. EDT, with a launch window that is instantaneous.

This follows a launch dress rehearsal April 30 by the SpaceX launch team that concluded with a brief engine firing to verify the company's Falcon 9 rocket is ready to launch. The practice countdown also tested some of the systems on the Dragon spacecraft that will fly to the space station.

Full background from NASA on today's mission is here (http://www.nasa.gov/exploration/commercial/cargo/spacex_update_staticfiring.html)

and the launch will be covered by NASA TV (http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/index.html) :ok:

ORAC
19th May 2012, 09:45
Also covered direct by Space X (http://www.space.com/15760-spacex-capsule-launch-webcasts.html)

brockenspectre
19th May 2012, 09:59
T-0.01 launch auto-abort.

Next launch attempt to be 22nd I think.

Wonder what happened.....

Update: apparently abort on Engine 5 - chamber pressure high.

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

tony draper
19th May 2012, 10:00
At least it did not blow up which they tended to do int olden days when I were a nipper.
:uhoh:

Gertrude the Wombat
19th May 2012, 10:20
At least it did not blow up which they tended to do int olden days when I were a nipper
Yeah, that's what I thought. Aborting a launch sequence in such a way that

(1) the spacecraft didn't blow up

(2) they are actually able to comtemplate using the spacecraft again

is really rather impressive.

brockenspectre
19th May 2012, 10:45
Drapes - if you lived in N Korea it would remain the norm!! :D

GertrudeTheWombat - yeps it is impressive.. to stop at T-0.01 with a sense of, OK we just need to housekeep the launch vehicle, is marvellous! :ok:

tony draper
19th May 2012, 10:50
Mind you the ones launched from across the North Sea were meant to blow up.
:rolleyes:

brockenspectre
21st May 2012, 23:13
Hawthorne, CA Tomorrow, Tuesday, May 22nd, at 3:44 AM Eastern, Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) will attempt to launch a 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 try to send a spacecraft to the International Space Station.

So....see some of you "there" I hope!! :ok:

G-CPTN
21st May 2012, 23:56
3:44 AM Eastern
I make that 8.44 BST . . .

ORAC
22nd May 2012, 08:59
Outstanding!! Everything nominal from engine start to in orbit solar panel deployment. next stop the ISS. :ok:

brockenspectre
22nd May 2012, 09:03
Fantastic!!!!!!!!!!!!! Night launches are always impressive :ok: Couldn't have been smoother.

Next .... docking on Friday!

Cacophonix
22nd May 2012, 09:19
Ah hah! Elon Musk, a South African/American entrepreneur who if he wasn't actually doing this stuff would be a shoe in for a Bond villain...! ;)

Elon Musk, Space X, Dragon... where is Ian Fleming when you need him?

Good luck to this team and to Mr Musk who hails from my old home town.

Caco

Carry0nLuggage
22nd May 2012, 21:50
I'm currently in Munich on a training course with some guys from Bremen who work on Ariane 5. As they were dismissive of SpaceX's efforts I was quite pleased to tell them of their success over dinner this evening. :ok:

TWT
22nd May 2012, 22:32
Incredible achievement.
I thought it was interesting that after the aborted launch on the 19th,there was a picture published showing 2 engineers on the launch pad in jeans and t-shirts :ok:

Some of the ashes of 'Scotty' from Star Trek were onboard along with several hundred others:

Page 2: SpaceX Launch: Falcon Rocket Carries Cremated Ashes of James Doohan ('Scotty' of 'Star Trek'), Astronaut Gordon Cooper - ABC News (http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/spacex-launch-falcon-rocket-carries-cremated-ashes-james/story?id=16398839&page=2)

Nemrytter
23rd May 2012, 08:09
I'm currently in Munich on a training course with some guys from Bremen who work on Ariane 5. As they were dismissive of SpaceX's efforts I was quite pleased to tell them of their success over dinner this evening.
And I imagine that they, like everyone else in the space community, will still be dismissive of SpaceX. They've got quite a long way to go before they're taken as seriously as the big players but yesterday they managed an almost flawless countdown and launch - things are going in the right direction.

Rengineer
24th May 2012, 10:30
Nobody I've met in the industry is really dismissive of their efforts. The company probably has the most modern launch rocket in the USA at present, and they're doing a good job of the technical management.

It's a different matter to dismiss the sensationalism around them. Being able to loft 500kg of freight to the ISS with a 133-M$ or so rocket-and-spaceship combo is nice and it'll be nicer when they reach their target payoad (though that'll be much lower to the ISS than what they publish as LEO payload).
But we can launch 9 tons to the ISS with Bremen-built hardware for roughly the same $$ per kg. We did it successfully three times out of three so far, and got much less hype. And before anyone mentions "privately developed": The business model for the Falcon is, they get paid after delivery. That's currently the status for us too. Nothing new here. These guys are doing an amazing job :D - I can tell because we're doing the same here - but they're not (yet) as far out ahead as people believe.

MagnusP
24th May 2012, 10:44
Eeeek. Don't start comparing Ariane and SpaceX; ye'll have KAG at yer door in no time. ;)

ORAC
24th May 2012, 11:14
But we can launch 9 tons to the ISS with Bremen-built hardware for roughly the same $$ per kg. Hmmm.

From what I've read of late there is a desperate need to develop a smaller, much lower unit cost, alternate to Ariane 5 to allow flexible launch of single payloads. Which seems to be SpaceX current targte market segment.

it's fine having the equivalent of an A380 if you can wait around to find enough people to fill it, and then quote lower costs per passenger mile, but you don't sell many.

Rengineer
24th May 2012, 13:14
@Magnus, Orac: You both have a point. Back to topic.

Dragon is now in an orbit below the ISS, has checked out its remote control, and as I understand will approach for berthing tomorrow. Best of luck.

brockenspectre
24th May 2012, 15:07
Live (and probably will be repeated) update here now NASA - NASA TV (http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/index.html)

Rengineer - perhaps the "Bremen rocket maker" (??Astrium) needs to hook the public's imagination a little better for it to get its fair share of "hype"!! Feel free to publish weblinks here and, of course, lnks to where folks can find live-streaming media of the launches, briefings etc :ok:

Anything to promote interest in space exploration gets my vote/interest!!

Rengineer
24th May 2012, 15:43
Brocken,

good idea. Our next launch is planned on 19 June. Video will be available here (http://www.arianespace.tv/). You'll also find the most recent flights there.
Mission status (from our beloved rocket customer) is here (http://www.arianespace.com/news/mission-status.asp)and you can see all of our stuff here (http://www.astrium.eads.net/en/), of course.

I might go and post a bit in another thread when I think it makes a good read.

brockenspectre
24th May 2012, 17:17
Rengineer - excellent!! I have made a reminder for the 18th that something space-y is happening on the 19th.

Nearer the time do what I did for this SpaceX launch and start a thread... but don't do as I did and put a date hehehe didn't want to tell SpaceX but I think my committing them to a 19th launch was a big of a jinx hehehe

I would love to see European Space "stuff" being promoted... on FB.. on here etc... :ok:

The other thing is merchandising. NASA was always v street-smart when it came to promoting itself. I have some Tee-shirts commemorating shuttle launches and a couple of baseball caps with mission patches on.. some bought online and some at KSC (Kennedy Space Center) and I love em! If there was ESA merchandise available at a sensible price I, and I am sure thousands of other amateur space geeks, would be happy to pay to advertise on ESA's behalf hehehe Small items.. pens, Tees, baseball caps, mission patches, usb drives etc... all could turn a tidy sum!! :ok:

Nemrytter
24th May 2012, 17:36
Nobody I've met in the industry is really dismissive of their efforts.
Dismissive was the wrong word, what I was meaning is that SpaceX are thought of differently to the established group. Kind of like a little brother the attitude seems to be more akin to 'look at that - they managed it'. Success seems to be a surprise whilst failure is epxected - the exact opposite of other launch companies. Like I said before once they prove themselves that attitude will change, arrogance (even with good reason) and ingrained ideas take a while to shift.

From what I've read of late there is a desperate need to develop a smaller, much lower unit cost, alternate to Ariane 5 to allow flexible launch of single payloads.
Hence why we now allow Soyuz launches from Kourou. Vega will fill the market for even smaller satellites whenever it gets around to being operational. IMO Ariane is only really cost effective for multiple-GTO launches.

dead_pan
24th May 2012, 22:20
If there was ESA merchandise available at a sensible price I, and I am sure thousands of other amateur space geeks, would be happy to pay to advertise on ESA's behalf hehehe Small items.. pens, Tees, baseball caps, mission patches, usb drives etc... all could turn a tidy sum!!

I discussed this idea with some people (PR and others) at ESTEC some years back. They weren't in the slightest bit interested in doing it themselves beyond the usual promo goods they commission for conferences etc. They were more than happy for a third party to produce and sell merchandise - at the time they weren't even interested in royalties etc on any ESA logos or images used. There view was that these were free for anyone to use (in Europe, that is), providing their permission was received and they were credited. Following these discussions I did contact several science museums and the like all of whom expressed an interest in such goods. Didn't take it any further due to other commitments, but as you say I think it could be a nice little earner for someone.

farsouth
25th May 2012, 21:40
Space X Dragon is first commercial vehicle to attach to International Space Station - Your Houston News: News (http://www.yourhoustonnews.com/pasadena/news/space-x-dragon-is-first-commercial-vehicle-to-attach-to/article_9958c707-b1cb-50ad-b585-14ec23b25ff8.html)



Successfully docked to ISS :)

tony draper
25th May 2012, 21:43
Just thinking,what do they do with the empty spacecraft once all the stores are transfered? is it just cast adrift or sent forth on a orbit that will cause it to re enter and burn up?
:confused:

Nemrytter
25th May 2012, 22:15
It will re-enter, but unless they really screw something up it won't be burning. It's scheduled to splash-down in an area a few hundred km from the US coast. That's one of the prime objectives of the mission as they're touting it as a possible crewed return vehicle, so demonstrating a return capability is important. It'll also be carrying some stuff down with it, no idea what though.

G-CPTN
25th May 2012, 22:15
what do they do with the empty spacecraft once all the stores are transfered? is it just cast adrift or sent forth on a orbit that will cause it to re enter and burn up?
The capsule utilizes a PICA-X heat shield based on a proprietary variant of NASA's phenolic impregnated carbon ablator (PICA) material designed to protect the capsule during Earth atmospheric reentry, even at high return velocities from Lunar and Martian destinations.
The Dragon capsule is re-usable, and can be flown on multiple missions.
However, the trunk is not recoverable; it separates from the capsule before re-entry and burns up in Earth's atmosphere.
From:- Dragon (spacecraft) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dragon_%28spacecraft%29#General_characteristics)

tony draper
25th May 2012, 22:25
Ah right chaps,thought it might be difficult to run a profitable transport business if you kept throwing away your truck after every delivery.
:)

farsouth
31st May 2012, 16:12
Dragon has undocked from ISS and due to splash down in the Pacific at 15.44 UTC today

farsouth
31st May 2012, 16:38
Three main chutes open -live feed Watch Live: SpaceX's Dragon Undocks, Deorbits, and Returns to Earth | Wired Science | Wired.com (http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2012/05/spacex-release-splashdown/)

farsouth
31st May 2012, 16:55
Looks like it has splashed down, on time (2 minutes early), on target, about 500 miles West of Baja California :D:D:D

Looked just like the old Apollo capsules floating down - guess they got the principles right the first time............