Posts Tagged ‘SpaceX Dragon’

'This Week In Space' – June 6, 2010

June 7, 2010

Falcon 9 Launch. June 4, 2010

Hello and Welcome to a special edition of “This Week In Space.”  I am talking about what might very well be the beginning of a new era in space – the door might have opened with the successful inaugural test flight of the Falcon 9 rocket – built by SpaceX.   It happened on Friday at Cape Canaveral.  The nine Merlin engines fired as designed – produced more than a million pounds of thrust – sending Falcon 9 on its way to space. The first stage separated as it was supposed to – and the second stage rocket fired on schedule as well. The only apparent fly in the ointment – second stage – along with mockup up of the Dragon Capsule – began a slow roll. No word on why just yet. SpaceX is leading the charge to open up low earth orbit to private ventures seeking to create a new industry in space. It is a lynch pin of the Obama space vision – and it remains the subject of a lot of controversy – even after this successful first flight. I caught up with SpaceX founder Elon Musk about 24 hours after the launch.

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The Commercial Space Race Heats Up

December 21, 2009
DragonLab In Orbit.  Courtesy:  SpaceX

DragonLab In Orbit. Courtesy: SpaceX

Although the Augustine Commission did not offer up “recommendations” – it is clear they want NASA to focus on moving beyond low earth orbit – creating some space – if you will – for entrepreneurs to boldly go where only the government has gone before.

The man in the vanguard of this push is one Elon Musk – the PayPal multimillionaire – who now heads SpaceX. The California company won the NASA contract to build rockets that will deliver cargo to the International Space Station – but Musk hopes to do more than that – one day offering a ride to orbit for human beings.

SpaceX plans to test its Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon space capsule in early in 2010.

Former NASA astronaut Ken Bowersox is working on safety issues for SpaceX.  Watch below, or read the transcript of my interview with him.

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