SpaceX’s Dragon capsule to visit ISS in February

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    Steve WSteve W
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    Aaaaaaaand…. launch abort was at T minus 10 seconds from liftoff. Nobody took me up on my wager, I missed out on a Dr Pepper. Bummer. But I just had the feeling that they’d never launch, what with their track record and all. And their launch window was supposedly only one second wide, I don’t think they’ve got it in them to hit that type of mark.


    Looks like the chamber pressure in one of the engines was too high, and their software caught that and nixed the whole thing. Better that than it blowing up in the air.

    No idea when they’re gonna try again.


    Twitter traffic from SpaceX founder Elon Musk:

    Elon Musk ‏@elonmusk
    Launch aborted: slightly high combustion chamber pressure on engine 5. Will adjust limits for countdown in a few days.


    Also, I didn’t see your Dr. Pepper bet, and wouldn’t have taken you up on it anyway – Dr. Pepper is one of our most precious natural resources. I can’t see squandering it like that.


    We’ll find out on the new SpaceX launch date, May 22nd.

    Same crappy wee-hours-of-the-morning launch window.

    Steve WSteve W
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    I won’t be able to watch that “launch”, since I’ll be working some painfully early morning shifts for the next several days.

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    I’m surprised Earl didn’t post here already: Dragon launched successfully and is in orbit! YAY!


    I was asleep. 😳 Probably why it got off the ground. “Quick! Blast that thing out of here while that Earl guy’s not looking!”

    Here’s the launch:

    …and here’s the view from the webcam inside the Dragon capsule, released just a little while ago by SpaceX:

    Somewhere in all that cargo are the ashes of one James Doohan. You would’ve thought that would be a good luck charm against any engineering difficulties right there.


    The Dragon has wings…

    …and eyes too.

    Steve WSteve W
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    Good for them. Now maybe Armadillo Aerospace will feel the heat and ramp things up in the civilian aerospace industry.


    Dragon spotted from the ISS during this morning’s flyby:

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    That’s no small moon…um, OK I got nothing.

    This is basically the third time James Doohan’s ashes were successfully sent to space. The first time was for only four minutes (a sub-orbital flight that flew as expected). A second attempt was made but the rocket failed to reach orbit due to a problem with the first stage separating from the second stage. However, the rocket was 217 km in altitude at the time so James’ remains were in space, albeit only briefly (longer than the first flight anyway).

    Mr. Doohan’s ashes are expected to stay in orbit for a year (the remains were stored in the second stage of the rocket which was put in an unstable orbit that will last only a year) at which point it will burn up as it falls to Earth.


    Dragon ahoy!

    Here’s how Dragon’s thermal camera sees the station right now:

    Dragon dockin’ in about 10 minutes.


    Apparently they’re putting off the grapple procedure for about an hour. Not sure what’s up there.


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