Friday, December 3, 2010

Late-Breaking News

Well, either my jinx is getting less potent or SpaceX is getting better. (I hope the latter) Anyway, the static fire went off today at about 1:00 PM, and though the webcast still has similar issues to those encountered back at the Flight 1 launch in June (indeed, maybe worse), once things got going the actual fire seemed pretty incident-free. This morning, the two Space Shuttle Solid Rocket Booster recovery boats, which SpaceX has hired to use to attempt booster recovery for analysis on this mission and possibly reuse on later missions, left Port Canaveral to head out to sea, so it looks like everything is coming together. It's hard for me to adequately explain how much this flight excites me, but my heart jumped when this thing rolled out with the first man-capable vehicle to be developed in the US in my lifetime even if it's only being used for cargo at the moment, and today's success means that it could fly as soon as next week.

UPDATE (2:08 PM EST): Looks like all was not well. Apparently the test was aborted between T+1 and T+2 seconds (before the full runtime) due to a high chamber pressure on one engine. They're hoping to recycle for another go at it, but the range limit is 3 PM today. Crossing fingers... Anyway, thanks as always to the great people at NASAspaceflight and NSF L2 for keeping everyone informed.

UPDATE: (9:05 AM EST Saturday): Just woke up, and they're going for the second attempt. Counting at T-25 minutes, webcast is at the same place. Come on Falcon!
Falcon 9 Vehicle and Dragon Rolling Out for COTS-1 Static Fire
Dec 3, 2010
A bunch of great pictures came out of SpaceX with this static fire through their twitter feed (including the one above) and their twitpic account. I may post a few of my other favorites later today, and the closing link would be a video of the firing, but all the videos so far are off the jumpy low-resolution webcast. Oh well, can't be helped.

No comments:

Post a Comment