MAKE CHAPTER 288 YOUR AVIATION HOME! E-AB, TYPE CERTIFIED, VINTAGE, WARBIRD, ETC.
On Monday (April 19) at about 6:30AM EDT, the ultra-lightweight robot successfully took off into the Martian sky. This maneuver was the first powered, controlled flight on another planet.
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Our teams conducted a successful full-duration 8 minute (499.6 seconds) hot fire of the Artemis I core stage in the iconic B-2 test stand at NASA’s Stennis Space Center. The Green Run is an eight-test series that put the rocket’s Boeing-built core stage through its paces to help verify it for launch. Click below to check out the spectacular smoke and fire test:
SpaceX plans to get even more ambitious with its pinpoint rocket landings.
Elon Musk's company routinely recovers and reuses the first stages of its Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets, bringing the boosters down for soft vertical landingsabout 9 minutes after liftoff on ground near the launch pad or on autonomous "drone ships" in the ocean.
These touchdowns are impressively precise. But SpaceX aims to achieve something truly mind-blowing with Starship, the next-generation system the company is developing to take people and payloads to the moon, Mars and other distant destinations.
Engineers at JPL applauding the success after years of hard work
SpaceX's Starlink megaconstellation is designed to provide global broadband coverage for high-speed internet access, particularly for people in rural and remote areas. Each of the flat-panel Starlink satellites weighs roughly a quarter-ton and are built in-house at a SpaceX facility in Redmond, Washington. (The company also manufactures its own own user terminals and ground stations.) While SpaceX expects its initial set of Starlink satellites to be 1,440 strong, the company has plans to launch thousands more. Company founder and CEO Elon Musk has said SpaceX needs between 500 and 800 satellites in orbit before service can begin to roll out. SpaceX is inching closer and closer to that goal, as it has delivered nearly 800 into orbit so far.
The Federal Communications Commission has granted SpaceX permission to launch as many as 12,000 of the flat-panel broadband satellites, but SpaceX may not stop there. The company has indicated it will see approval to launch as many as 30,000 of its internet-beaming satellites to beam down high-speed, low-latency Internet signals.
On Dec 16, NASA awarded Blue Origin a NASA Launch Services II (NLS II) Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract to launch planetary, Earth observation, exploration, and scientific satellites for the agency aboard New Glenn, Blue Origin’s orbital reusable launch vehicle. The contract allows Blue Origin to compete for missions through Launch Service Task Orders issued by NASA. Project managers at NASA Centers around the country can now design spacecraft to take advantage of New Glenn’s unique seven-meter fairing and heavy-lift performance for a broad range of missions.
“We are proud to be in NASA’s launch services catalog and look forward to providing reliable launches for future NASA missions aboard New Glenn for years to come. The award builds on Blue Origin’s existing partnership with NASA and will advance science and exploration to benefit Earth,” said Jarrett Jones, senior vice president, New Glenn, Blue Origin.
New Glenn is a single-configuration, operationally reusable heavy-lift launch vehicle powered by seven BE-4 liquefied natural gas rocket engines. The vehicle’s seven-meter fairing provides more than double the usable volume of any existing launch vehicle.