Tag Archive: SpaceX

Jan 18 2016

SpaceX didn’t ask me, but…

Well, the no-news from “Just Read the Instructions” was that the booster stuck the landing, but a bit too hard for at least one of the landing struts: Is it me, or does the booster look like it buckled a bit in the middle? The booster may have landed harder than they planned. I don’t …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2016/01/18/spacex-didnt-ask-me-but/

Jan 17 2016

Live blogging the Jason-3 launch and booster recovery

Time (Pacific local) Event 1055 Well, I have to head out the door to take my daughter to a cheer competition (she was the one videoing from our back patio). I’ll follow up on the booster landing when I get back. BOOO to SpaceX for cutting off their Web cast without news from “Just Read …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2016/01/17/live-blogging-the-jason-3-launch-and-booster-recovery/

Jan 14 2016

Sierra Nevada gets a piece of the CRS-2 pie

NASA awards ISS cargo transport contracts. SpaceX, Sierra Nevada, and Orbital ATK all were winners, with 6 cargo flights to the ISS guaranteed for each. The agency applied knowledge gained from the first commercial resupply contracts with Orbital ATK and SpaceX and required a number of key enhancements for these contracts. This includes starting with …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2016/01/14/sierra-nevada-gets-a-piece-of-the-crs-2-pie/

Jan 13 2016

To live-blog, or to try to get a picture?

That is the question… SpaceX Going For Offshore Barge Landings For Their Next Several Falcon-9 Launches. If it is a clear day, I can sometimes see the contrails from launches at Vandenburg from my house. The Jason-3 launch might make for an interesting picture from my house if the conditions are right. Then again, I …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2016/01/13/to-live-blog-or-to-try-to-get-a-picture/

Dec 30 2015

Landed booster being evaluated for future hot fire

Historic First Falcon-9 to Land from Space Transported to KSC 39A for Testing. I’d love to be a fly on the wall for their post-landing testing…Hey SpaceX, I’ve got plenty of test and evaluation experience!! “The returned first stage will be the test article here (39A), and it will go into the hangar where they …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/12/30/landed-booster-being-evaluated-for-future-hot-fire/

Dec 24 2015

My return stage is bigger than yours

Regarding the pissing match between Jeff Bezos (Blue Origin) and Elon Musk (SpaceX), I think they’re both being ridiculous. Both the New Shepherd’s landing and the Falcon 9 first stage landing were impressive, and both advance their respective company’s business case, and neither business case is in direct competition with each other. New Shepherd is …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/12/24/my-return-stage-is-bigger-than-yours/

Dec 22 2015

So how close did SpaceX come to hitting the bullseye on the landing pad?

I wondered that at the end of my live-blogging. Looks like the answer is “Pretty darn close.”

Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/12/22/so-how-close-did-spacex-come-to-hitting-the-bullseye-on-the-landing-pad/

Dec 21 2015

Live-blogging the ORBCOMM-2 SpaceX Launch and Booster Recovery

Alrighty…here we go. Just got home from work. All times Pacific. I’ve got a good feeling about today’s events. Just sayin’… CONGRATS TO SpaceX!! I wonder how close they got to the center of the landing pad? Time Event/Observations 1750 SpaceX Webcast signing off. 1748 Next 2 ORBCOMM satellites deployed — there they go. It’s …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/12/21/live-blogging-the-orbcomm-2-spacex-launch-and-booster-recovery/

Dec 20 2015

Stay tuned to this station for further developments…

SpaceX Plans Launch, Landing on Sunday – UPDATED. Contrast to what I reported yesterday, the booster recovery will be attempted at Cape Canaveral. Launch time will be no earlier than 5:39 pm this afternoon, and I’ll be live-blogging the launch from about T-45 minutes through the recovery landing attempt. Launch weather looks to be 90% …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/12/20/stay-tuned-to-this-station-for-further-developments/

Dec 19 2015


SpaceX Completes Hot Fire Test, Eyes NET Sunday Night for Falcon-9 Return to Flight. Originally scheduled for 16 December, the static hot fire test occurred last night around 4:09pm Pacific after two previous attempts were aborted. The ORBCOMM launch is now scheduled for Sunday with a launch window between 5 and 6pm Sunday, though that …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/12/19/finally/

Dec 15 2015

Upcoming SpaceX launch schedule

Tentative SpaceX Schedule Shaping Up, SpX-8 In February. This should solidify after the static test fire tomorrow (16 Dec). Assuming the static test fire goes off with no issue, then their launch schedule will be: 16 Dec: Static test fire at Canaveral 19 Dec: ORBCOMM launch Mid-Jan 2016: SES-9 launch Mid-Jan 2016: Jason-3 launch Feb …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/12/15/upcoming-spacex-launch-schedule/

Dec 08 2015

And now it is Moon Express coming up on the outside…

XPRIZE Gives Moon Express a GO for 2017 Launch to Land First Private Spacecraft On the Moon. SpaceIL will launch to the moon aboard a SpaceX Falcon-9 booster as a secondary payload, but Moon Express will launch their spacecraft, the MX-1E lunar lander, with the Los Angeles-based company Rocket Lab USA, riding on their 52.5-foot-tall …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/12/08/and-now-it-is-moon-express-coming-up-on-the-outside/

Nov 25 2015

I agree with this take

Bezos’ Rocket Landing a Big Step for Suborbital Spaceflight but Not Same as Falcon-9 Plans. First, some sour grapes from Elon Musk: SpaceX CEO Elon Musk also took to Twitter to congratulate Bezos and Blue Origin for their accomplishment. While many were under the impression that Blue Origin was the first reusable rocket, Musk was …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/11/25/i-agree-with-this-take/

Nov 23 2015

SpaceX officially in the commercial crew business

NASA Orders SpaceX Crew Mission to ISS. Pretty much a formality given that they already have the contract, but still…pretty big news. The Capture the Flag race is now officially on. Related articles: SpaceX Receives First Order for Space Station Crew-Exchange Mission from NASA NASA Gives SpaceX Company 1st Mission Order to International Space Station …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/11/23/spacex-officially-in-the-commercial-crew-business/

Nov 08 2015

Boeing out of the running for CRS2 contract

NASA drops Boeing from race for $3.5 billion cargo contract. I’m kinda surprised, though to be honest, I haven’t had a chance to dive into this like I did with the CCtCAP announcement. Highlights from the article: Boeing’s cargo version of their CST-100 Starliner is no longer in the running, based on a NASA letter …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/11/08/boeing-out-of-the-running-for-crs2-contract/

Oct 26 2015

Tentative SpaceX Launch Schedule

SpaceX preparing for Static Fire test on first Full Thrust Falcon 9 First Stage. The concrete hasn’t even begun to harden on these tentative dates, but they at least give us something to which to look forward. Week of 26 Oct: Full Thrust test at MacGregor Early Dec: Orbcomm-2 mission to LEO (plus 2nd stage …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/10/26/tentative-spacex-launch-schedule/

Oct 24 2015

Dragonfly arrives at McGregor

SpaceX DragonFly arrives at McGregor for testing. This is the start of two years of testing for the ultimate goal of a propulsive landing of the capsule. I hereby direct my staff in Texas (i.e. my son in nearby Waco) to find out the test schedule and get themselves press passes and get invited to …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/10/24/dragonfly-arrives-at-mcgregor/

Oct 20 2015

SpaceX swaps ORBCOMM launch with SES

SpaceX Changes Its Falcon 9 Rocket Return-to-Flight Plans. Doing the ORBCOMM mission first, with a delivery only to LEO, will allow an on-orbit test of the new second-stage engine, which will therefore (assuming a successful test) reduce the risk to the SES-9 launch to GEO afterwards. SES wanted SES-9 to launch no later than September, …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/10/20/spacex-swaps-orbcomm-launch-with-ses/

Oct 16 2015

SpaceX Falcon 9 back in business with Orbcomm OG-2 mission

SpaceX Will Return Falcon-9 to Flight with Orbcomm-2 Mission to Test Rocket’s Upper Stage. Looks like that launch will be 6 to 8 weeks from now. This will also be an attempt at a barge landing so…yep, I’ll be live-blogging that!! Related article: ORBCOMM + SpaceX Getting Prep’d For Launch Headway—Eleven OG2 Satellites Send Off …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/10/16/spacex-falcon-9-back-in-business-with-orbcomm-og-2-mission/

Oct 15 2015

No waiver for you!!

No Waiver for ULA for GPS III Launch Contract. ULA is arguing that without the waiver, they’ll likely not be able to bid on the contract, which would leave SpaceX as the only certified launcher left, which would violate DoD policy to have at least two viable launch options at any one time. However, the …

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