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Thread: NewSpace News

  1. #79
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    Charles Walker: the first commercial astronaut
    .
    Last night I attended another one of the monthly Arizona Space Business Roundtable events held here in Tucson to bring together the business-oriented space community of this city.

    The speaker was Charles Walker, who had flown three shuttle missions in 1984 and 1985, but not as a NASA-employed astronaut but as an employee of McDonnell-Douglas, making him the first astronaut to fly in space under the employ of a private commercial company.

    Walker’s job then was to monitor and maintain a drug-processing unit designed to produce large quantities of pure biological hormones that on Earth were simply not possible. Gravity polluted the process, while weightlessness acted to purify things. If successful the hormone produced could be sold to fight anemia, especially in individuals taking radiation treatments. The image on the right shows him on his third and last shuttle mission, launched November 26, 1985. He is working with a handheld protein crystal growth experiment, with the larger hormone purifying experiment on the wall behind this.

    According to Walker’s presentation yesterday, this third flight in November 1985 demonstrated the process worked and could produce as much as one liter of hormone, enough to easily make back the cost of the project and leave room for an acceptable profit. They were thus ready for fullscale production on future shuttle flights, only to have the entire project die when the Challenger shuttle was lost on January 28, 1986. With that failure President Reagan declared that the shuttle would no longer be used for commercial flights.

    Their business plan had been dependent on the artificially low launch prices NASA had been charging them for shuttle flights. Without the shuttle there was then no affordable alternative for getting into orbit.

    The process is still viable, and the need for these drugs still exists. Whether they could now be flown on the new cheaper private rockets, on board future private space stations like Bigelow’s B330, remains unknown. A new company would have to pick up the pieces, as McDonnell-Douglas no longer exists, having been absorbed into Boeing.

    Read the rest:
    https://behindtheblack.com/behind-th...ial-astronaut/
    Vacuum Technology:
    CRUD = Contamination Resulting in Undesirable Deposits.
    CRAPP = Contamination Resulting in Additional Partial Pressure.

    Change your vacuum pump oil now.

    Test. Testing, 1,2,3.

  2. #80
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    Rocket Report: NASA chief hits back at Boeing, Falcon 9’s extended coast
    "It will be a busy year."
    https://arstechnica.com/science/2019...xtended-coast/
    Vacuum Technology:
    CRUD = Contamination Resulting in Undesirable Deposits.
    CRAPP = Contamination Resulting in Additional Partial Pressure.

    Change your vacuum pump oil now.

    Test. Testing, 1,2,3.

  3. #81
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    SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon at pad 39A before the capsule’s first orbital test flight last year. Credit: SpaceX

    https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/01/0...st-for-jan-18/


    Crew Dragon | Launch Escape Animation

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qObBRM4euxk


    Video: Preview of dramatic Crew Dragon In-Flight Abort Test
    .
    SpaceX’s final planned Crew Dragon test flight before astronauts ride the commercial spaceship into orbit is scheduled for Saturday, when an unpiloted crew capsule will fire off the top of a Falcon 9 rocket shortly after launch from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida to test the craft’s in-flight emergency escape capability.

    https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/01/1...ht-abort-test/


    SpaceX abort test serves as practice run for astronauts, rescue teams
    .

    NASA astronaut Doug Hurley participates in a 2019 training event to rehearse pre-launch crew operations for a Crew Dragon mission. Credit: SpaceX

    A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon capsule were raised vertical at launch pad 39A in Florida late Thursday, setting the stage for a launch day dress rehearsal Friday with NASA astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken — the veteran space fliers assigned to the Crew Dragon’s first piloted mission later this year — before a critical in-flight test of the ship’s emergency escape system Saturday.

    NASA and SpaceX officials convened a launch readiness review Thursday and gave approval for SpaceX to proceed with final preparations for the Crew Dragon In-Flight Abort Test Saturday.

    The test flight is set for liftoff from pad 39A during a four-hour window Saturday opening at 8 a.m. EST (1300 GMT). There is a 90 percent chance of favorable weather for the test flight Saturday, according to the official launch weather forecast.

    https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/01/1...-rescue-teams/


    Pending test outcomes, NASA says SpaceX could launch astronauts in early March
    .

    NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley inside SpaceX’s crew access arm early Friday at launch pad 39A, where they participated in a dry run of their
    suit-up activities and movements before their launch on a Crew Dragon spacecraft later this year. Credit: NASA


    A NASA official said Friday that SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft could be ready to ferry astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken to the International Space Station as soon as early March, pending the results from a major demonstration of the ship’s launch abort system this weekend, a pair of parachute drop tests, and space station crew schedules.

    Kathy Lueders, head of NASA’s commercial crew program, told reporters Friday that the Crew Dragon capsule slated to carry Hurley and Behnken into orbit on the so-called “Demo-2” mission could be ready for for flight within a couple of months.

    “The vehicle will be all ready at the end of February,” Lueders said. “We’re kind of shooting for early March, right now, from a planning perspective. That would be the earliest.”

    https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/01/1...n-early-march/


    SpaceX delays dramatic Crew Dragon abort test due to high winds and rough seas
    .
    The launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket on a dramatic in-flight test of the emergency escape system built into the company's Crew Dragon astronaut ferry ship was delayed 24 hours on Saturday because of high winds and rough seas in the capsule's off-shore recovery zone.

    The Falcon 9, featuring a thrice-flown first stage and a fueled but engine-less second stage, is expected to be destroyed during the test while the unpiloted Crew Dragon capsule, equipped with eight powerful Super Draco rocket engines, is boosted to safety before splashing down about 20 miles northeast of Cape Canaveral.

    Launch from historic pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center originally was targeted for 8 a.m. ET Saturday, the opening of a four-hour window. But forecasters warned that expected high winds and rough seas off shore could cause problems for the Crew Dragon's recovery.


    An artist's impression of an unpiloted Crew Dragon spacecraft pulling away from its Falcon 9 booster in the
    initial moments of an in-flight abort. SpaceX plans to launch an unpiloted Falcon 9 Saturday to demonstrate
    the Crew Dragon's ability to propel a crew to safety in the event of a catastrophic malfunction. SpaceX

    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/spacex-...ay-2020-01-18/


    Also,

    SpaceX drawing up plans for mobile gantry at launch pad 39A
    .

    A SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket stands at launch pad 39A before liftoff in June 2019 on the STP-2 mission for the U.S. Air Force. Credit: SpaceX

    With construction already underway at Kennedy Space Center’s launch pad 39A on facilities for SpaceX’s next-generation Starship vehicle, another new fixture could soon rise at the seaside launch complex to satisfy U.S. military requirements to vertically integrate sensitive top secret spy satellites with Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets.

    SpaceX is finalizing plans to build the new moveable tower at pad 39A, company officials said. Its function will be similar to mobile gantries in use at other launch pads, such as service towers used by United Launch Alliance at the company’s Delta 4 launch pads at Cape Canaveral and Vandenberg Air Force Base, California.

    The tower will surround Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets at pad 39A, shielding the vehicles from storms and high winds and providing a controlled environment for ground crews to hoist heavy satellites and mount them on top of the launch vehicles in a vertical configuration.

    https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/01/0...aunch-pad-39a/
    Last edited by Space Racer; 01-18-2020 at 09:31 AM.
    Vacuum Technology:
    CRUD = Contamination Resulting in Undesirable Deposits.
    CRAPP = Contamination Resulting in Additional Partial Pressure.

    Change your vacuum pump oil now.

    Test. Testing, 1,2,3.

  4. #82
    Join Date
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    Space X launch scrubbed, flight aims to test ...
    See the video.
    https://www.cbsnews.com/video/space-...ty-procedures/
    Vacuum Technology:
    CRUD = Contamination Resulting in Undesirable Deposits.
    CRAPP = Contamination Resulting in Additional Partial Pressure.

    Change your vacuum pump oil now.

    Test. Testing, 1,2,3.

  5. #83
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    SpaceX Crew Dragon InFlight Abort Test will include an exploding rocket

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IMCeuupFfT4

    Pending test outcomes, NASA says SpaceX could launch astronauts in early March
    .
    A NASA official said Friday that SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft could be ready to ferry astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken to the International Space Station as soon as early March, pending the results from a major demonstration of the ship’s launch abort system this weekend, a pair of parachute drop tests, and space station crew schedules.

    https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/01/1...n-early-march/


    SpaceX aces final major test before first crew mission
    .

    SpaceX’s Falcon 9 booster disintegrated in a fireball — as expected — a few seconds after the Crew Dragon capsule fired away from the top of the rocket in an in-flight escape demonstration Sunday. Credit: Spaceflight Now

    SpaceX performed a dramatic high-altitude test flight Sunday of the company’s Crew Dragon capsule over Florida’s Space Coast, testing the human-rated ship’s ability to escape a rocket failure and save its crew before two NASA astronauts strap in for a flight to the International Space Station as soon as this spring.

    The unusual test flight included an intentional failure of the Crew Dragon’s Falcon 9 rocket about a minute-and-a-half after liftoff from the Kennedy Space Center. The rocket, with a recycled first stage booster flown three previous times, disintegrated in a fireball high over the Atlantic Ocean as the crew capsule sped away from the top of the launcher with a powerful boost from eight SuperDraco engines.

    https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/01/1...-crew-mission/


    Photos: SpaceX purposely fails rocket to test crew capsule safety system
    https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/01/1...safety-system/

    Crew Dragon Launch Escape Demonstration
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mhrkdHshb3E

    Crew Dragon separating from Falcon 9 during today’s test, which verified the spacecraft’s ability to carry astronauts to safety in the unlikely event of an emergency on ascent
    https://twitter.com/SpaceX/status/1218976479150858241

    SpaceX Crew Dragon In-Flight Abort Test [NASA Version]
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ARIZnaMXTEU

    NASA, SpaceX Complete Final Major Flight Test of Crew Spacecraft
    https://www.nasa.gov/press-release/n...rew-spacecraft

    SpaceX In-Flight Abort Test Live Launch Coverage [download]
    https://images.nasa.gov/details-KSC-...verage-3241307

    SpaceX releases preliminary results from Crew Dragon abort test
    https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/01/2...on-abort-test/
    .....................

    What amazing SpaceX milestones are coming in 2020? - SpaceX Starship, Crew Dragon/Cargo & Starlink
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oJoJTwkSQ9c

    Crew Dragon in EMI Chamber
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J1jYx4UKvUk

    SpaceX Crew Dragon Arrives for Demo-2 Mission
    https://blogs.nasa.gov/commercialcrew/category/spacex/

    SpaceX’s Crew Dragon delivered to Cape Canaveral for first flight with astronauts
    https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/02/1...th-astronauts/

    SpaceX Starship Update, Starlink, Crew Dragon, Solar Orbiter and NASA news. What a week!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIahDZP3GwA

    NASA preparing for long-duration SpaceX commercial crew test flight
    .
    WASHINGTON — NASA is leaning increasingly towards making SpaceX’s crewed test flight to the International Space Station a long-duration mission, a move that could alleviate concerns about a lack of crew on the station later this year.

    https://spacenews.com/nasa-preparing...w-test-flight/

    NASA leaning towards long-duration flight for 1st Dragon mission
    https://behindtheblack.com/behind-the-black/points-of-information/nasa-leaning-towards-long-duration-flight-for-1st-dragon-mission/

    ......................

    CRS-20 is the last launch of the original Dragon capsule. It also marks the 50th landing of a Falcon 9 booster.

    SpaceX's Starlink launch ambitions just saved a space station resupply mission from bigger delays
    https://www.teslarati.com/spacex-sta...tation-delays/

    SpaceX's first orbital spacecraft set to smash reusability record on last launch
    https://www.teslarati.com/spacex-fir...bility-record/

    SpaceX Dragon Heads to Space Station with NASA Science, Cargo
    https://blogs.nasa.gov/spacex/2020/0...science-cargo/

    CRS-20 Mission
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1MkcWK2PnsU

    Late-night launch of SpaceX cargo ship marks end of an era
    https://spaceflightnow.com/2020/03/0...end-of-an-era/
    Last edited by Space Racer; 03-08-2020 at 07:48 AM.
    Vacuum Technology:
    CRUD = Contamination Resulting in Undesirable Deposits.
    CRAPP = Contamination Resulting in Additional Partial Pressure.

    Change your vacuum pump oil now.

    Test. Testing, 1,2,3.

  6. #84
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    One thing that’s new is using the Cape for Solar orbit missions.

    https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2019...ridor-florida/

    SpaceX will be doing just that no earlier then the end of this month.

    SpaceX has used Vandenberg for this launch mission 15 times & I’ve seen quite a few of them (tho not many during bright daylight).
    I'll miss the show if SpaceX abandons this location.
    Eric

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