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SpaceX test explosion... next!


December 6th, 1957 Vanguard TV3 blew up and destroyed a significant portion of its Cape Canaveral launch pad.  Media reports were quick to put the cost of the project in the header of their stories... just under the famous headlines with the catchy words: Flopnik, Kaputnik, Oopsnik and Stayputnik.

11 and a half years later the largest rocket ever built had safely delivered two Human Beings to the surface of the moon and just a few years after that the media was so bored with successful flights that the coverage of the walks of 10 other human beings on another world sloped off to casual mentions. 

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Lower launch cost means lower payload build cost. The Domino effect


It has been stated repeatedly over the years that adjusted cost of launch per pound has not changed since 1961.  But that is now no longer true.

“One of the big drivers was cost,” Spiwak said. “We’re able to get the launch cost significantly reduced, get more payload mass to orbit, and reduce the overall cycle time of (building each satellite).”

Quote from Mark Spiwak, president of Boeing Satellite Systems International Inc. on last night's SpaceX launch.

He's hyping the thrusters but the SpaceX launch cost is a major part of the equation. THAT is what it is all about.  Lower cost to orbit means payloads don't have to cost so much to build for every inconceivable fringe issue that may not ever come up. You can add some risk because putting up another bird costs less.


Space and the regular Joe mind KFI Los Angeles


There're a lot of sticks in Los Angeles but eventually every English speaking listener over 30 spends some quarter hours with Bill Handel on KFI. 

Driving home this morning Handel teased a fluff on the SpaceX fin test and I got in the door just in time to switch on the recorder... nice piece.  Elon's team has the von Braun public face momentum well rolling.

Have an mp3 listen by clicking right here.



smartly done, once again.

good job SpaceX.

Grow Your Hair For Space


Over the years, as every new NASA budget fiasco has loomed, a memory has popped into my head. Back in the fearful Sputnik days American school children sent their personal pennies to the NASA offices with handwritten notes of support.

It's brought up in documentaries as an example of the blind faith of the Space Age and the power of the simple children.

Seems someone else has been pestered by it and, more than me, is actually taking it as a possible stunt that could work again. Click here for the NASA Bake Sale story.

More power to them.. but I wonder if it's better that we finally have a President who isn't afraid to admit that he has no personal love for continuing the BoeHeed money pit and his disinterest has given SPACE it first positive change in generations.


Dragon Down, test2&3 success


Dragon Down.

The bonds of the Military Industrial complex vendor's control of Space have been broken.

Go SpaceX.


Elon Musk 2008 Mars Society Video


I knew I had a good video copy of this! 

2008 Mars Society Convention in Colorado, I was sitting there getting the audio and knew I had a video camera rolling too but darned if I couldn't find it for posting. 

There was one last box of assorted stuff being kicked around after the LA move and finally I got to the bottom of it... And found Elon Musk making a long ago clear path to what is only now getting mainstream, or even mainstream among Space Industry folks.

PLEASE get all the way through it to the questions, it starts as a current status report that may be a bit dry but it gets very very interesting.  Does current SpaceX work continue on the strategic path stated in 2008?

Flash Video

Getting into Space... where to start?


I recently met a mother of a young Space kid.  He's a great young man, has done SpaceCamp and visited SpaceX and has the bug.  I sent her this note about my impression of active periodicals and thought that in case there were others who knew of smart kids, or anyone looking for a good item to donate to school libraries, it might be of some help...



Elon Musk On The Daily Show


In case you missed it...

Third and fourth segments of the show... starting a bit past the half.


Elon Musk gets the last word


Last week's Space News Profile was on Elon Musk.  In case you don't read Space News, the Profile is the last page of the edition where a bunch of one-liner questions are fired at the target. 

SpaceX is the golden company and the olden companies (and thus the major money to Space News) are not very happy.  There was snide in the questions... but the angle was clear to readers in the very first intro sentence. 

It being a Profile segment, it had restrictions on the "guest".

I was wondering though, well before the end of the piece, when Musk would take the next correct step.  This evening it came to all SpaceX email subscribers...


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Since 1997 a place for my stuff, and it if helps you too then all the better