Category Archives: SpaceX

History in the Making


Who will be the first passenger to go to the moon and back (hopefully)? SpaceX has signed a passenger and that person will be the first to ride the SpaceX BFR Mission to the Moon. The trip has been made by just 24 people in history.

We are about to find out who, when, and why! History in the making.

When? The SpaceX website says 18 Sept 2018 at 01:00 UT / 21:00 ET (on 17 Sept). However if one actually does the math using the little “timer to live” they give on the link, the start times are an hour BEFORE that.  It can be confusing, that’s why I will almost always use UTC and the prevailing US Eastern time, I figure people in the states and Canada will easily convert that to what ever timezone they are in.

I am going to err on the side of caution and publish an hour before hand (the 1 am time). The 21:00 ET / 01:00 UT time makes more sense because that is 18:00 PDT.

Space X Launches Merah Putih

The Merah Putih is an Indonesian communications satellite and was put into a geostationary orbit from a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

The rocket 1st stage was a reused Block 5 first flown in May 2018 and it was as you will see (sort of) again landed on a drone ship.

The launch took off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida USA.

SpaceX Launching SES-12

A spectacular launch! You can fast forward to about 13 minutes into the video for the launch, but in doing so you miss a bit of good bit of information about the mission.

Mission: SES-12

Rocket: SpaceX Falcon 9

Spaceport: Cape Canaveral Air Force Base, Launch Complex 40

Launch time: 04:29 UTC / 12:29 EDT – Weather permitting

Falcon 9 Block 5 to Fly Today

The Space X Falcon 9 “Block 5” is getting ready to take flight later today.

The Falcon 9 “Block 5” is the latest iteration of rockets  by Space X.  The Block 5 is an updated configuration of the Falcon 9 that will allow for easier re-usability.  It also aims to prevent an occurrence of an explosion like the 2016 explosion at Cape Canaveral, reportedly it involves the helium pressurization system.

Space X will be launching a French built satellite for Bangladesh called Bangabandhu Satellite-1.  This will Bangladesh’s first communications satellite.

Launch Date: 10 May 2018

Launch time is 20:12 UT / 16:12 ET (window opening)

Spaceport:  Kennedy Space Center

A live link will be up here at 19:50 / 15:50 ET

Image: Space X

 

Dragon’s Cargo

The Dragon cargo-spaceship is carrying about 2,630 kg (5,8000 lb) of pressurized mass and will return about 1,770 kg (3,900 lb) of various materials.

One of the really cool (to me) items being sent up is called The Atmosphere-Space Interactions Monitor (ASIM). This monitor surveys severe thunderstorms in Earth’s atmosphere and upper-atmospheric lightning, or transient luminous events, from its perch on the exterior of the European Space Agency (ESA) Columbus module. These include sprites, flashes caused by electrical break-down in the mesosphere; the blue jet, a discharge from cloud tops upward into the stratosphere; and ELVES, concentric rings of emissions caused by an electromagnetic pulse in the ionosphere.

Elves and Sprites

The launch is scheduled for 20:30 UTC / 04:30 ET. Coverage begins around 20:15 UTC / 04:15 ET.  I say “about” because the start time is dependent on Space X.  The link will be up so you might have to check back.

What if the launch does not happen for whatever reason, there is a back up date /time in 24 hours later.