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SpaceX

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  #101 (permalink)
 DeadCatBounced 
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I think there is a lot of jealousy regarding what Elon Musk is doing with his companies.

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 Big Mike 
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@tgibbs I know you can't talk about the crash, but I hope everyone at SpaceX is keeping their spirits up. This sounds like a difficult problem, with no clear evidence of what happened, and I don't think Elon or his team are the type to make assumptions if the evidence doesn't support it.

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  #103 (permalink)
 Big Mike 
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So how many Falcon 9's does SpaceX have anyway?

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 Big Mike 
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A good wiki on Falcon 9, but unless there is only one of each revision, I still don't have an understanding for how many Falcon 9's are in rotation flying.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Falcon_9

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 tgibbs 
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@Big Mike thanks for the thoughts. With as large as the company is it's still a little surreal from my position as it hasn't really affected what I am working on at all. The end of the day it really sucks to fail a rocket, but like the team did in the early days when Falcon 1 went through its failures we will pick up the pieces, figure out what went wrong, and keep flying vehicles.

As for vehicles flying, every vehicle we launch thus far has been a brand new one fresh off the factory floor. Same goes for Dragon capsules although I think that is going to change soon. There isn't really any direction from the top as to when we will begin reflying the same 1st stage vehicle other than as soon as we can (with the general assumption we have to be comfortable with it). If I had to guess I would say post flight 30 though for a customer reflight mission. We still use a lot of traditional aerospace parts that don't have the reliability needed for multiple launches along with still trying to figure out exactly how to land this beast back at the launch site.

If you want some laughs too ... here is a funny article Conspiracy Theorists Think Lockheed Martin Blew Up SpaceX's Rocket With a Laser | Motherboard

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  #106 (permalink)
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tgibbs View Post
@Big Mike thanks for the thoughts. With as large as the company is it's still a little surreal from my position as it hasn't really affected what I am working on at all. The end of the day it really sucks to fail a rocket, but like the team did in the early days when Falcon 1 went through its failures we will pick up the pieces, figure out what went wrong, and keep flying vehicles.

As for vehicles flying, every vehicle we launch thus far has been a brand new one fresh off the factory floor. Same goes for Dragon capsules although I think that is going to change soon. There isn't really any direction from the top as to when we will begin reflying the same 1st stage vehicle other than as soon as we can (with the general assumption we have to be comfortable with it). If I had to guess I would say post flight 30 though for a customer reflight mission. We still use a lot of traditional aerospace parts that don't have the reliability needed for multiple launches along with still trying to figure out exactly how to land this beast back at the launch site.

If you want some laughs too ... here is a funny article Conspiracy Theorists Think Lockheed Martin Blew Up SpaceX's Rocket With a Laser | Motherboard

Is there any public info on how long it takes to produce a new rocket (purely manufacturing, not design) and what the costs are? Just curious.

Thanks for your post. And as for LM, I wouldn't put it past LM/GD...

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  #107 (permalink)
 Big Mike 
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That's an interesting article. Got me thinking, I assume SpaceX has better video of the incident than what people were shooting from the ground. From some sort of aircraft or satellite tasked for this?







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Big Mike View Post
Is there any public info on how long it takes to produce a new rocket (purely manufacturing, not design) and what the costs are? Just curious.

Thanks for your post. And as for LM, I wouldn't put it past LM/GD...

Mike

$61.2MM per launch. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Falcon_9_v1.1

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 tgibbs 
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I'm actually not even sure how long it takes to fully build a vehicle. The rate is increasing weekly as well, each vehicle that gets built means the process becomes more streamlined and easier to build. The reduction of man hours witch hunt has been huge. My guess though from when the first piece of raw material hits a machine is at least 8 months, probably closer to a year though ahead of launch though. Raw material orders are being placed in huge lumps for some of the more exotic materials we get; years ahead of actual need dates. The entire production process is still very amazing to me ... I look at a launch vehicle that we build and its very simple ... couple tanks, some valves, vents, bolt on an engine and you go light the match. Look at an airplane and the production line they go down theres lots of different videos, this one popped up first in a search Anyways getting off track

One thing about that laser thingy that a co worker pointed out was had it actually been a laser then that would have also given an ignition source for the LOx in the 2nd stage tank. From the videos I have seen the vehicle purely crumpled with very little explosion (relatively ... for example thats a Boeing Delta II that a solid rocket booster strap on blew up not far above the pad).

Even after this issue if the entire launch service industry isn't shaking in their boots yet then they will be out of business soon enough. You can see the repercussions already of us just hitting a barge with a rocket not even being able to make it stay upright and now all of a sudden ULA and Arianne are working on "reusable" sections of their vehicles. I am glad they are seeing the light though and making moves in the same direction, competition is good for everyone. To sit back idly and not admit that the aerospace industry can change is foolish.

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Elon's always stated that his companies were a means to an end. They need to be profitable, but only to encourage others to change their ways for the benefit of mankind. I am glad Elon exists.

Each of his projects have a very specific goal to better humanity. Very few companies can say the same, with a straight face.

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Meet the first astronauts for NASA?s commercial space flight program | The Verge

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@verge: A failed strut in the liquid oxygen tank caused the SpaceX rocket explosion theverge.com/2015/7/20/9004463/space-x-falcon-9-rocket-explosion-cause-explained?utm_campaign=theverge&utm_content=article&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter# pic.twitter.com/kvyKGclPNo



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  #113 (permalink)
 DeadCatBounced 
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Been waiting a really really long time for this post!

Previously this guy has done a lengthy post on Elon Musk, and a separate one on Tesla which are both well worth the reads.

Just getting started on this one today on SpaceX and I am very much looking forward too it!

How (and Why) SpaceX Will Colonize Mars - Wait But Why

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 animalSpiritArb1 
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I don't understand how SpaceX can expect to survive the deaths that it will take to get humans to mars.

Apollo cost a few people's lives in accidents. Mars is another order of magnitude compared to the moon and you don't have the will of the people involved in a cold war to sacrifice for this.

It is such an obvious "billionaire takes too much acid at Burning Man" idea.

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animalSpiritArb1 View Post
I don't understand how SpaceX can expect to survive the deaths that it will take to get humans to mars.

Apollo cost a few people's lives in accidents. Mars is another order of magnitude compared to the moon and you don't have the will of the people involved in a cold war to sacrifice for this.

It is such an obvious "billionaire takes too much acid at Burning Man" idea.

I suggest you educate yourself before posting

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Boeing Dumped From NASA's $3.5 Billion Cargo-Flight Contest - Bloomberg Business

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A piece of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket is sitting on a beach in England | The Verge

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SpaceX will try to land its next Falcon 9 rocket on solid ground, NASA says | The Verge

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Only skimmed the article, but did they give a reason for the change of venue? I assume water based would mean less damage, so maybe they are confident enough the next test will be successful?

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Only skimmed the article, but did they give a reason for the change of venue? I assume water based would mean less damage, so maybe they are confident enough the next test will be successful?

Mike

It doesn't say. My opinion is they realized how hard and stupid it was aiming for a barge on a moving sea... @tgibbs might have a better opinion...

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It doesn't say. My opinion is they realized how hard and stupid it was aiming for a barge on a moving sea... @tgibbs might have a better opinion...

Being in international waters has zero regulations which is the main reason. The amount of paperwork and testing to be able to launch a vehicle from an Air Force base is amazing. Now think about a vehicle that is now headed towards land at an incredible speed and has never been tested before. The Air Force hasn't even thought up paperwork for all that haha! If you can do it on a barge than your case is really good for landing on land. If you can hit a barge then your case is better than nothing I suppose lol.

The vehicle actually has zero care about land or water as the vehicle is purely hitting a single spot. Whether the barge can hold position and the swells are low enough for the landing to happen is where luck of the weather will come in. Otherwise there isn't much difference. Well one more difference is the fuel to burn in order to head back the direction you came vs just float it down range ...

My bet though is the barges aren't going to be put out of service any time soon. Some missions that are really heavy will require it to land down range instead of at the launch site

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 tturner86 
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tgibbs View Post
Being in international waters has zero regulations which is the main reason. The amount of paperwork and testing to be able to launch a vehicle from an Air Force base is amazing. Now think about a vehicle that is now headed towards land at an incredible speed and has never been tested before. The Air Force hasn't even thought up paperwork for all that haha! If you can do it on a barge than your case is really good for landing on land. If you can hit a barge then your case is better than nothing I suppose lol.

The vehicle actually has zero care about land or water as the vehicle is purely hitting a single spot. Whether the barge can hold position and the swells are low enough for the landing to happen is where luck of the weather will come in. Otherwise there isn't much difference. Well one more difference is the fuel to burn in order to head back the direction you came vs just float it down range ...

My bet though is the barges aren't going to be put out of service any time soon. Some missions that are really heavy will require it to land down range instead of at the launch site

That was something I was thinking about, the difference between landing downrange and back at launch site. To me it would almost be easier to orbit once and land instead of burning fuel to come backwards. Reminds me of the aborts for the shuttle. (Return to launch, Transalantic Abort, Abort Once around and the Abort to Orbit.)

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 tgibbs 
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That was something I was thinking about, the difference between landing downrange and back at launch site. To me it would almost be easier to orbit once and land instead of burning fuel to come backwards. Reminds me of the aborts for the shuttle. (Return to launch, Transalantic Abort, Abort Once around and the Abort to Orbit.)

Unfortunately the 1st stage isn't high enough or fast enough to abort and orbit. The 2nd stage does a lot of work. The barge position is basically where the stage would hit if it were just left alone. The only reason the engines light is to orient the vehicle tail end first, to keep the vehicle from oscillating and then finally to slow down prior to landing (or impact )

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 tturner86 
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Will Elon Musk's SpaceX Go Public?

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 tturner86 
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SpaceX attempts rocket landing on land on Saturday - Business Insider

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 tgibbs 
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Should be an exciting evening

Falcon 9?s return-to-flight launch delayed 24 hours | Spaceflight Now

And they actually got clearance from the Air Force to land back on the new landing site pad ... Pretty surprised

Rocket landing at Cape Canaveral planned after SpaceX launch | Spaceflight Now

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 tturner86 
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T-Minus 2hrs @tgibbs

SpaceX | Webcast

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T-Minus 2hrs @tgibbs

SpaceX | Webcast

Going to be an exciting 30 minutes leading up to launch

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 tturner86 
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Click link above 3 mins till booster landing...

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@spaceX
The Falcon 9 first stage landing is confirmed. Second stage continuing nominally.


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 SatchFan 
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T-Minus 2hrs @tgibbs

SpaceX | Webcast

Thanks for the link, that was awesome! Stage 1 don't mess around when it comes in for a landing does it?!

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Long exposure of launch and landing...


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 tturner86 
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@tgibbs I think you stuck the landing just fine...

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Long exposure of launch and landing...


That's a sweet picture. Everything that I could see looked awesome. The VPs were jumping around like little kids in the front of mission control so you know it had to have gone really well

Space X made history again, every other rocket company had to have muttered some unpleasant words when the 1st stage landed, and if they didn't they should be as the entire rocket industry just changed.

Very cool stuff!

About the stage coming in hot, it's easier from a propellant utilization POV. If you try to come in slow you use a lot of time and prop in order to slow down and stay slow. As opposed to lighting the engine at the last second with barely enough prop onboard means you can take more weight to space or better trajectories etc.

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Congratulations!!!

Sent from my phone

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Awesome achievement,

cheers,

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Long exposure of launch and landing...


Which one is which? Assuming the left is blast off, why does the landing have a break in the thrust/engine in that picture, was it literally not burning during that time?

The angle also looks really steep, but I suppose the aircraft can be upright relatively easy despite the landing arch?

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Which one is which? Assuming the left is blast off, why does the landing have a break in the thrust/engine in that picture, was it literally not burning during that time?

The angle also looks really steep, but I suppose the aircraft can be upright relatively easy despite the landing arch?

Mike

Yep, left is liftoff and the right was the two stage burn for landing. That break is a bit of what @tgibbs was talking about the rocket coming in hot.

There were 3 burns. Where it turns around (entry burn), a positioning burn, and then the final landing burn.

Video from the pad. Can't find it on youtube only from SpaceX FB: https://www.facebook.com/SpaceX/videos/10156855814470131/

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Yeah @tturner86 nailed it with regards to the breaks in th engine light. The arc is normal and depends on a couple factors, trajectory you are launching towards meaning are you going to an orbit that is near the equator or polar orbits or whichever. I'm guessing part of the reason that orbcomm sats were switched to this flight was because of trajectory. Orbcomm sats go into polar orbit which means they circle the earth vertically over the poles (sorta). Think GPS satellites and also spy satellites. As opposed to the SES sat that was supposed to go into a comm position which is normally geosynchronous. Think direct tv receiver. Those sats sit out at a spot that allows them to rotate at the same angle as the earth. So once you position it then it covers the same part of the earth all the time. In contrast a full orbit for a polar orbit sat is something on the order of 90 minutes.

So the reason for switching those missions is GEO orbits require a lot more speed so the arc change from launch site is large. What that means is your down range velocity is higher, and if you want to hit the launch pad with the 1st stage whatever speed your going down range with you have to stop and have some speed the opposite way. Polar orbits the 1st stage can keep a relatively straight up trajectory and then let the 2nd stage do a lot of the horizontal speed work.

But the problem is you can't go straight up because if something were to blow up 10 miles up and the vehicle was straight over the launch pad the debris field would be huge and casualties could almost be guaranteed to a small extent. If you want to watch something scary YouTube search delta 2 explosion. Happened in the 90s and the barrage of molten metal that rained down on everything was amazing. So to cap this off the vehicle will arc over the ocean to minimize the debris field. If you were launching like sea launch from the middle of the ocean off a platform then going straight up wouldn't be an issue.

All this comes back to stocks though ... And the unfortunate detail that I doubt space x will go public any time soon. 5 years minimum would be my best guess. Problem is it's not in elons best interest to go public.

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I am very curious to learn some post-flight stats, like how much fuel was remaining for example (how "close" was it)

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I am very curious to learn some post-flight stats, like how much fuel was remaining for example (how "close" was it)

Mike



Here is a good example of how it all worked.

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Jeff really pissed me off with his "welcome to the club" bullshit tweet.

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Attachment 200022

Jeff really pissed me off with his "welcome to the club" bullshit tweet.

Sent from my phone

Doesn't want to face the facts ... Like other factions of the USA as well.

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Did SpaceX Just Put Boeing and Lockheed Martin Out of the Space Launch Business? -- The Motley Fool

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I think Putin put those guys out of the space business.

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I love Musk, but an opposing view: Elon Musk's growing empire is fueled by $4.9 billion in government subsidies - LA Times

To me as a taxpayer I am glad to see Musk put the money to good use instead of funding more projects for corrupt sentors and their friends.

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Space X launch today, landing test...


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Space X launch today, landing test...


Thanks! With the NFL playoffs on, I had forgotten about this...

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 Scalpingtrader 
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thx for the link, turner.

Main mission 100% accomplished, secondary target of landing on the ocean platform failed.

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thx for the link, turner.

Main mission 100% accomplished, secondary target of landing on the ocean platform failed.

Video of landing:
https://www.instagram.com/p/BAqirNbwEc0/

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I think Elon said on Twitter a few days ago, he expects only 70% success landing this year, and I think he said 90% next year?

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Dragon is on its way to the International Space Station, and capture by the station crew set for early Sunday morning. The first stage of the Falcon 9 landed on our Of Course I Still Love You droneship in the Atlantic.


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Skip to 27 mins 30 secs.
@Big Mike...

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Skip to 27 mins 30 secs.
@Big Mike...

Very impressive.
Any idea of the wind during the "landing"? According to the sea aspect I'll say around 25 knots, which is perfect for wind-surfing but quite high for a rocket!
The sea was not very calm either, that's really an amazing performance!

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Very impressive.
Any idea of the wind during the "landing"? According to the sea aspect I'll say around 25 knots, which is perfect for wind-surfing but quite high for a rocket!
The sea was not very calm either, that's really an amazing performance!

At least. @tgibbs might be able to answer?

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At least. @tgibbs might be able to answer?

Not sure exactly but the feeling I got is the waves were at the upper limits with possibly some excedences. Winds I would think have less of an overall effect on the landing because the vehicle descends so rapidly. The waves and ocean currents are much more an issue as that drives deck angle, ability of the platform to stay in place etc.

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I had thought about doing something like this or with the Pirates of the Caribbean theme...

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I had thought about doing something like this or with the Pirates of the Caribbean theme...

Haha I had to forward that into some space X buddies. Pretty awesome!

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I had thought about doing something like this or with the Pirates of the Caribbean theme...

There may or may not have been a mass email from a certain corner office within space X with this YouTube video link in it ...

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There may or may not have been a mass email from a certain corner office within space X with this YouTube video link in it ...

Musk posted it on Instagram so it seems to be SpaceX approved.

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Elon Musk Says SpaceX ?City on Mars? Will Be Announced in Mexico | Observer

I had a dream the other night that SpaceX and Nasa had started daily launches to and from Mars. In my dream it was about a 28 day journey. It was kind of like the old west. The government was deeding plots of land on Mars to families willing to travel and colonize it. SpaceX was supplying all of the habitats and materials. In my dream Elon was giving a safety meeting on the surface of Mars. I don't remember the details but it was about Martian weather and that there had already be settlers who had died.

It was a great dream. I was sad to awake.

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SpaceX Will Launch Private Mars Missions as Soon as 2018

Mars or bust @Big Mike...

@srgtroy is far enough west for you?

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https://www.yahoo.com/tech/spacex-undercut-ula-rocket-launch-pricing-40-percent-192915341--finance.html

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What a misleading title ... The price difference has been known all along, not a surprise. I sure hope ULA is doing some serious sole searching though to figure out what niche they are going to cater to

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Next launch bumped to Friday because of weather Stormy weather in Florida delays Falcon 9 launch ? Spaceflight Now

If things go perfectly performance wise there is a good chance of hitting the barge. Be very cool if they can stick the landing with a high performance required payload

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Way to go @tgibbs!!!

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Congrats SpaceX and Elon, was able to catch it live

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SpaceX wants its astronauts to look like superheroes | Science! | Geek.com

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SpaceX is such a cool company. If only there was an IPO...

"Free markets work because they allow people to be lucky, thanks to aggressive trial and error, not by giving rewards or incentives for skill. The strategy is, then, to tinker as much as possible and try to collect as many Black Swan opportunities as you can"
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Its odd that Andy Griffith was the original Elon Musk with the tail-landing reusable spaceship in Salvage 1. As a kid I built a scale model of the Vulture.. and blew it up.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salvage_1


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Was it me or was the broadcast much better than before?

I hope it IPOs .... And turns into the next Google priced stock

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Amazing video

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 SatchFan 
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Video of them loading the Falcon 9 up on a flatbed via a crane at about 4:40. Also, a youtube user commented that this is the CRS4 and not the JCSAT... for what it's worth...

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 tturner86 
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SpaceX Stuns the Cynics -- The Motley Fool

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I worked for some major corporations but the closest parallel for slicing through fat, bloated & outmoded competition would have been Dell Corp. in the 90s. Tech stock of the century next to Microsoft depending how how you counted it. I was at a level where I occasionally heard the private thoughts of Michael Dell and he knew what was going to happen (Apple's current dilemma).

The superlative quarter results after several years of kicking ass got not-so-amazing, expansion began to saturate and the shareholders became an increasing anchor. It was not just the dot com bubble burst, that was an opportunity but Dell was bogged down in crap and could not exploit it sufficiently.

Things change from hey were all young and crazy, dontcha just love it! to 'big company syndrome' really fast. All they could do was buy other companies to introduce innovation as the straight jacket of corporate conformist behavior tightened.

I worked for another private company that similarly took over its market but never lost its vision.

I hope SpaceX stays far away from Wall St.

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 tturner86 
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SpaceX puts its third booster in a barn?and the result is dazzling | Ars Technica

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 SatchFan 
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A real "barn burner"!

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from the FiveThirtyEight Newsletter

More than $350 million

According to the Government Accountability Office, Department of Defense space launches from the United Launch Alliance (ULA) — a collaboration between Boeing and Lockheed Martin — cost more than $350 million each, compared to the less than $100 million per-launch cost SpaceX has promised. Politico reported: “Even the Pentagon’s acquisition chief grants that the creation of ULA — a monopoly criticized by the Federal Trade Commission when it was formed at the government’s behest a decade ago — may have been a mistake.” [POLITICO]

How Elon Musk exposed billions in questionable Pentagon spending - POLITICO

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 SMCJB 
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Elon Musk's Most Unexpected Success Is the SpaceX Live-Stream

Elon Musk's Most Unexpected Success Is the SpaceX Live-Stream - Bloomberg

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GOAL!!! @tgibbs

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GOAL!!! @tgibbs


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Amazing, the landing seems to work all the time now!
I click on the youtube link and was not sure it was live, that was 20 secs before landing .
Thx @tturner86 !

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@Big Mike get your sick butt out of bed...


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SpaceX may have to pay $500 per ton to bring its landed Falcon 9 rockets into port | The Verge

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 tgibbs 
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Chump change in reality but all the little stuff adds up.

Exciting how the landings are becoming more routine nowadays. From talking with some buddies still there they are all on a huge push to ramp production up even quicker than it is today. Everything consists of doing things more efficiently and not cutting corners. In the last 6 months approx 3 weeks has been shed off the time that a vehicle sits in Texas (current bottleneck). That's almost in half if I'm not mistaken.

Current stock price hasn't reflected the excitement level around landing the vehicles which is interesting. At this point just have to be patient I think.

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tgibbs View Post
Chump change in reality but all the little stuff adds up.

Exciting how the landings are becoming more routine nowadays. From talking with some buddies still there they are all on a huge push to ramp production up even quicker than it is today. Everything consists of doing things more efficiently and not cutting corners. In the last 6 months approx 3 weeks has been shed off the time that a vehicle sits in Texas (current bottleneck). That's almost in half if I'm not mistaken.

Current stock price hasn't reflected the excitement level around landing the vehicles which is interesting. At this point just have to be patient I think.

Weren't they gonna try and launch from the Texas coast at one point?

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 tgibbs 
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@tturner86 ya I believe it's still going but at a snail pace in comparison. The business model needs high rate of launches to keep going so that is the huge focus. And reliability. The Texas launch center is mainly so they don't have to deal with the Air Force for every rock you turn over and pee they take. Some of their requirements are good, some are just dumb.

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@tturner86 ya I believe it's still going but at a snail pace in comparison. The business model needs high rate of launches to keep going so that is the huge focus. And reliability. The Texas launch center is mainly so they don't have to deal with the Air Force for every rock you turn over and pee they take. Some of their requirements are good, some are just dumb.

I don't live too far from Mcgregor, so I have heard the rocket test and have seen the grasshopper before.

I'd be cool to see a launch from South Texas.

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I don't live too far from Mcgregor, so I have heard the rocket test and have seen the grasshopper before.

I'd be cool to see a launch from South Texas.

I was back there to watch one of the grasshopper tests and talk about surreal ... When the engine passes the horizon into the blue sky the entire thing looks fake, then you remember that the vibration is shaking the heart out of your chest! Some of the videos show the same thing too.

I have some buddies in temple. Still think about moving out that way

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 tturner86 
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https://www.universetoday.com/130432/spacex-just-put-coolest-garden-gnome-ever-front-yard/

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 tturner86 
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@Big Mike get your sick butt out of bed...


This is such an awesome video @Big Mike @tgibbs

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This is such an awesome video @Big Mike @tgibbs

Isn't it!!

I think this video was posted a ways back but the go pro was working until just before it hit the dirt. It was a very awesome video to watch all the way through. It gives a different perspective as to how the atmosphere affects an object like that. It started out tumbling just a little bit and then got so fast you were sick just watching it


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 xplorer 
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The cause of the blast is not clear and it is not known if anyone was hurt.

Nasa said SpaceX was test-firing a rocket which was due to take a satellite into space this weekend.

Pictures from the scene show a huge plume of smoke rising above the complex.

The force of the blast shook buildings several miles away.

SpaceX has used its Falcon-9 rocket to take supplies to the International Space Station (ISS).


On BBC News

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