SpaceX abort test delayed until tomorrow (1/19) due to weather at recovery area.
SpaceX will conduct an inflight abort test of Crew Dragon tomorrow morning. As the Falcon 9 reaches max-Q, it will shut off its engines to simulate a worst case failure. This should trigger the Crew Dragon to separate from the rocket and fire its own Super Draco engines to get away from the failing rocket. Once clear, Crew Dragon will pop its parachutes and land gently in the Atlantic. This should be quite a show and is the last major milestone before an actual crewed launch.
Transit to Mars using current technology takes about six months. How might a crew react to that length of time in close quarters, moving ever farther from Earth? The ISS could provide a testbed and training facility for such a trip.
This might be the most dedicated space journalism I’ve ever encountered. I want to say “Bravo!”, but that seems weird.
Ever since human beings have been jamming themselves into little metal canisters and shooting themselves off into space, there has been one thing everyone wants to know: how do you go to the bathroom? Sure, you can read about how it’s done, and for most people that’s enough. But not for me. I wanted to…
In the final minutes of the Apollo 11 LM’s descent to the surface, Armstrong noticed that the intended landing site was too rocky and took manual control of the descent in order to find a better spot. The LM had never been flown in this manner, and Armstrong didn’t have time to discuss it with mission control.
We’ve all heard recordings of those final minutes of the LM descent. But we’ve never seen exactly what Armstrong saw until now. The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter team has reconstructed Armstrong’s view of the surface in those final minutes.
Pairing the audio recording with this footage is edge-of-the-seat exciting, as you imagine Armstrong coolly working the LM down while the voices at mission control have no idea of this extra drama under way at the time.
Watching this original coverage of the Apollo 11 launch today, I was struck by the professionalism. There is no attempt to entertain or sensationalize here. Just calm and composed communication of the most momentous event in human history.
Some details on SpaceX’s Mars plan and the issues they are working on.
Ostensibly about the SpaceX Raptor engine, it’s really so much more. If you’ve ever had a hankerin’ to learn more about rocket engine design, Everyday Astronaut‘s latest video is a great place to start.
A trip to Mars using current propulsion technology takes several months. During that time, astronauts will be exposed to solar and cosmic radiation. In Iowa, a group of undergrads is working the problem.
Here’s the most thorough evaluation of the the latest push for the Moon that I’ve found. The TL;DR is that the winds are all over the place. This push is likely to fail. But we should root for it anyway because it’s shaking things up.