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DocM

SpaceX Updates (thread 2)

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same here doc!!! yey!!!! so glad this mission was a success and it's freakin awesome how I'm a part of it.... *tears*

(a song called shining star started to play as I was writing this!)

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I plan on this being wallpaper somewhere -

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Musk just said they plan on testing Dragon with propulsive landing (no parachutes - rockets) later this year!

Dragon swimming - and yes, the scorching is normal. It's thin and would scrub off, or you could just replace the thermal protection panels, but for a museum piece you want it as-is.

Musk also says the solar panels generated more than the 5,000 watts they expected.

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That wallpaper is beautiful!

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You can add a big :woot: from me

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and now I can tack my dad's ashes in real time!!!! awesome!!!!

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remixedcat: you can? Cool!

Here's a 1680x1050 wallpaper crop I did of that shot with the colors/contrast enhanced.

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Ahhhh....I used that during the mission to track ISS and Dragon.

Very good resource.

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More from the landing.

The first was taken by sensors on NASA's P3 Orion observation aircraft with its infrared/lo-res tracking camera. Shows the parachutes right after deployment. The rest are just as she splashed down, in the water before recovery and on the barge after recovery.

The charring is normal - mostly burned off bits of the PICA-X heat shield that were deposited downstream. If you look closely some bits have already fallen off.

The white shell that covers Dragon is a thermal protection material new for this mission. The C1 Dragon was covered in ACUSIL, which is a silicone syntactic foam manufactured by ITT and used on missiles. Rather expensive. The C2+ Dragon was covered in SPAM (SpaceX Proprietary Ablative Material).

Yes, SPAM on a can, rather than in it.

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nahh all it needs is a little spit shine!!! LOLOLOL

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Parachute deployment etc.

Enhanced from the NASA original which was muddy.

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Elon Musk will be on CBS's 60 Minutes newsmagazine again tonight

http://www.cbsnews.c...ch/?id=7402185n

SpaceX, the company founded by Elon Musk recently became the first private firm to launch a space vehicle into orbit and successfully dock it at the International Space Station. The next test for SpaceX is whether it can become the first private venture to put a man into orbit. Watch Scott Pelley's report on Sunday, June 3 at 7 p.m. ET/PT.
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Oh hell yesss!!!

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So glad this was such a success. I'm looking forward to their next mission now.

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Some awesome photos in this thread. Congrats to SpaceX, can't wait for a Mars announcement. :woot:

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Falcon 9 #4 is at KSC and its first ISS resupply Dragon (CRS-1) leaves Hawthorn for KSC within a few weeks. Launch is probably September, with CRS-2 around December.

Those will be the last of the Falcon 9 1.0 launchers. After them the first Falcon 9 1.1 launches from the new SpaceX SLC-4E complex at Vandenberg AFB in California in Q1 2013 as a run-up to the first Falcon Heavy launch, the F9 1.1 also being the much larger & more powerful core stage for the Falcon Heavy.

That first F9 1.1 will launch a satellite for MacDonald, Dettwiler & Associates (MDA) of Canada, the makers of the Canadarm and other space robotics, comms and military systems.

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A better pic of DragonRider (crew Dragon) from a different angle.

Take note that the iLIDS (International Low Impact Docking System) docking adapter cover at the top is off-centered. This opens up space at one side for a small window, cameras and other docking sensors.

We also get a better look at the SuperDraco thruster "noses." With 8 independent and highly throttle-able SuperDraco's there is redundancy for propulsive ground landings, plus a mortar-fired parachute system as a backup.

The C1 Dragon from 2010 used a silicone foam thermal protection material for its external shell called ACUSIL, made by ITT-Aerotherm. It is the same material used to protect the data link antenna's on the back-shell of the Mars Science Laboratory that's on it's way to Mars. Its also used on missiles.

SpaceX (surprise-surprise) brought things back in-house and made their own aeroshell thermal protection material for Dragon C2+: SPAM (SpaceX Proprietary Ablative Material) - which while darkened after this last mission by heat shield residue it cleaned up well in those areas where it was tried. It's looking like SPAM, or a further evolution of it, is what'll be used for DragonRider's aeroshell panels.

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looks good, and the landing pics and video were nice. i also await further news, i hope this invigorates the drive to go further and faster.

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Specs for the next-gen Falcon 9 v. 1.1 and Falcon Heavy are in.

Pic comparing them to the current Falcon 9 v. 1.0 attached.

Merlin 1D

(Current Merlin 1C: 95,000 lbf & 125,000 lbf)

Merlin 1D sea level thrust: 147,000 lbf (1st stage)

Merlin 1D sea level ISP: 282 seconds

Merlin 1DVac vacuum thrust: 161,000 lbf (second stage)

Merlin 1DVac vacuum ISP: 311 seconds

Falcon 9 v. 1.1

(Falcon 9 1.0: 47.85 m / 157 ft w/Dragon)

Overall length: 69.2 m (227 ft)

Width: 3.6 m (12 ft)

Engines: 9x Merlin 1D + 1x Merlin 1DVac

Total thrust (sea level): 5.88 MN (1,320,000 lbf)

Mass to Low Earth Orbit (LEO): 13,150 kg (29,000 lb)

Mass to Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO): 4,850 kg (10,692 lb)

Falcon Heavy

Overall length: 69.2 m (227 ft)

Width: 3.6 m (12 ft) x 11.6 m (38 ft)

Engines: 27x Merlin 1D + 1x Merlin 1DVac

Total thrust: 17 MN (3,800,000 lbf)

Mass to Low Earth Orbit (LEO): 53,000 kg (117,000 lb)

Mass to Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO): 12,000 kg (26,460 lb)

Rumored (strongly): an advanced staged combustion engine that could increase the above payloads significantly.

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Updated pic

Falcon 9 v. 1.0 is the one used for flight 3, the last ISS mission. The F9 v. 1.1 goes live with flight 6, and will be used for both cargo and the DragonRider crewed flights. It also serves as the core stage for Falcon Heavy, and its first stage is used as the side boosters for FH.

Falcon Heavy will come in 2 configurations: one using fuel / liquid oxygen cross-feed and one not.

When using cross-feed extra fuel and liquid oxygen are pumped from the side boosters into the core stage so that when the side boosters separate the core stage has full tanks, increasing the mass to orbit. Technically, this makes Falcon Heavy a 2.5 stage rocket. Non-cross-feed would be used for smaller than max payloads and will be cheaper.

Dragon will also be available with 2 sizes of cargo trunk; the existing 2.3 m / 7.6 ft long version and a 4.3 m / 14.17 ft long version for larger cargo.

SpaceX has also signed a major deal with SpaceFlight Services to provide secondary, micro and mini satellite launches. Their deployment bus will be mounted on top of the second stage, then after the main payload (ex: Dragon or a large satellite) is deployed the second stage will re-light to put the other payloads into their orbits.

SpaceFlight Services will also handle payloads for the DragonLab free-flying experiment platform - an uncrewed robotic Dragon capable of 2 year science etc. missions. This will open up long term ISS-style microgravity research to universities, companies & governments who can't get ISS time.

DragonLab PDF....

SpaceFlight Services payload bus

ooandrwsspacex.jpg

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MEDIA ADVISORY: 12-200

NASA ADMINISTRATOR BOLDEN VIEWS HISTORIC SPACEX DRAGON CAPSULE

WASHINGTON -- NASA Administrator Charles Bolden joined SpaceX CEO and

Chief Designer Elon Musk at the SpaceX Rocket Development Facility in

McGregor, Texas, Wednesday to see the first commercial space capsule

to complete a mission to the International Space Station.

Bolden and Musk also thanked the more than 150 SpaceX employees

working at the McGregor facility for their role in the historic

mission. SpaceX's Dragon capsule made history May 31 when it returned

to Earth after delivering supplies to the space station.

"The Dragon capsule is a tangible example of the new era

of exploration unfolding right now," NASA Administrator Charles Bolden

said. "Commercial space is becoming a reality as SpaceX looks ahead

to future missions to the space station and other destinations. All

of NASA's partners in the commercial crew and cargo programs continue

to meet milestones designing the next generation of innovative U.S.

spacecraft destined for low Earth orbit. In addition, NASA centers

across the country are making exciting progress on the vehicles that

will take astronauts to farther destinations like an asteroid and

Mars. I congratulate Elon Musk and the SpaceX team again for this

historic milestone."

While on-site, Bolden had the opportunity to view some of the 1,367

pounds of cargo the spacecraft returned to Earth from the space

station. Dragon is the only spacecraft capable of returning a

significant quantity of science experiments and cargo from the

station. Experiments will be given back to researchers hoping to gain

new insights provided by the station's unique microgravity

environment. The cargo was transferred to NASA June 13 and will be

taken to the agency's Johnson Space Center in Houston for further

processing.

Dragon's journey to the station was SpaceX's second demonstration

mission under NASA's Commercial Orbital Transportation Services

Program (COTS), which provides investments intended to lead to

regular resupply missions to the International Space Station and

stimulate the commercial space industry in the United States. The

mission began May 22 as the capsule launched from Cape Canaveral Air

Force Station in Florida aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. After its

maneuverability and abort systems were tested, crew members of

Expedition 31 aboard the station grappled the capsule and berthed it

to the orbiting laboratory.

Dragon, its exterior scorched by the heat of re-entry, splashed down

in the Pacific Ocean May 31. SpaceX recovered the capsule immediately

and transported it to McGregor, where engineers unloaded cargo and

removed hazardous materials. Dragon will be shipped to SpaceX

Headquarters in Hawthorne, Calif., later this year.

On Thursday, Bolden and Musk will be at SpaceX Headquarters and speak

with reporters at 9 a.m. PDT. They will see the Dragon spacecraft

that flew the first COTS demonstration mission in December 2010,

during which SpaceX became the first private company to recover a

spacecraft after it orbited Earth. They also will see a prototype

Dragon spacecraft being designed to carry astronauts to the space

station as part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program.

Media representatives wishing to attend Thursday's event should email

media@SpaceX.com for information on access to the facilities.

Images of Bolden and Musk with the Dragon capsule in McGregor are

available at:

http://go.nasa.gov/Ku00nJ

and

http://go.nasa.gov/Ku0Ctq

For more information about NASA's COTS Program and SpaceX, visit:

http://www.spacex.com

For more information about Administrator Bolden, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/...bolden_bio.html

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Cool :)

http://blog.chron.co...-for-spaceport/

Musk says Texas is ?leading candidate? for spaceport

Texas is apparently stepping up its space game.

Today Elon Musk met with reporters at SpaceX?s rocket-testing operation in MacGregor and said Brownsville is the company?s leading candidate for a spaceport.

I wanted to attend the press availability but I am still enmeshed in reporting on the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute and the controversial University of Texas M.D. Anderson grant. Expect another story within the next few days.

In any case, according to SpaceX?s Kirstin Borst, here?s exactly what Musk said about the Texas site:

So, right now, Texas, the south coast of Texas is the lead candidate for that third launch site, and actually flying to meet with the Governor later today and a number of people on the Texas legislature side to talk about that as well as any potential questions in the future about flying astronauts if we're successful in winning future NASA business in that regard.

In regard to the Musk statement, if Texas truly is the leading candidate this is really big news. It represents a significant turnaround in his view since April, when he told me the state wasn't doing much to court his company.

Getting a spaceport in Texas would be huge for the state because it gets us into the rocket launching game. This is important moving forward as Florida has been seeking to get into the astronaut and flight control roles, which heretofore have been what Texas has done.

And having SpaceX build the spaceport, with its track record of successful launches, just makes it that much better.

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Today Elon Musk met with reporters at SpaceX?s rocket-testing operation in MacGregor and said Brownsville is the company?s leading candidate for a spaceport.

Cool. Having a spaceport has a nice ring to it.

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Near Brownsville on the coast, south of Port Isabel.

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