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You are here: MacNN Forums > Community > MacNN Lounge > Political/War Lounge > SpaceX successfully launches Falcon 9 / Dragon

SpaceX successfully launches Falcon 9 / Dragon
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olePigeon
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May 22, 2012, 02:03 PM
 
Pretty darn cool. I'm really excited about this. I've stuck this into the Political lounge because of the inevitable discussion it'll bring. So I'll go ahead and start it. A lot of people are talking about how it's nothing new, and how Boeing, Lockheed, and Northrop Grumman have been doing it for years. So what's the big excitement? Why is NASA so excited?

SpaceX is the first non-taxpayer funded entity to successfully venture into this realm. SpaceX's policy is that any cost overruns are covered by SpaceX, not by tax dollars. A big part of NASA's budget goes to cost overruns, which is ridiculously considered "normal" by the giant corporations with the no-bid contracts and congressmen with vested interest in pork it brings.

If SpaceX can set precedent and force the other companies to compete on its playing field, that means a whole lot of money is freed up for NASA. SpaceX's whole operation was done in the U.S., using American labor and American engineering. Even with SpaceX covering cost overruns, they were able to successfully launch and (hopefully) deliver a payload cheaper than China could. Even China said it could not compete with SpaceX's price to deliver payloads. China! That floors me.

I've yearned to see America return to its space exploration roots and see a real push that we haven't seen since the 1960s. I'm sure I'm just getting caught up in the excitement, but I can't help it.
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subego
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May 22, 2012, 02:16 PM
 
What does this have to do with gun control or abortion?
     
olePigeon  (op)
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May 22, 2012, 02:44 PM
 
Nothing. I was expecting it turn into a free market v. government thread.
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you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods,
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The Final Dakar
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May 22, 2012, 02:48 PM
 
I'm a little surprised that the coverage hasn't really clarified if this is manned or unmanned. I assume unmanned, but I'm curious as to how that complicates docking with the space station.
     
olePigeon  (op)
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May 22, 2012, 03:18 PM
 
It's unmanned, this one just carries cargo. Their next flight is planned to be manned. Russia's made several unmanned cargo deliveries. From what I understand, the module will communicate with the ISS and it should mostly be automated. However, it's not always a sure thing, so sometimes they have to abort and retry.
"…I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than
you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods,
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Uncle Skeleton
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May 22, 2012, 03:45 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
What does this have to do with gun control or abortion?
Say it out loud. (s) Pay-Sex. It's clearly a trojan horse ploy to gain support for legalizing prostitution. And abortion = prostitution. QED.
     
The Final Dakar
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May 22, 2012, 03:49 PM
 
They don't call it a payload for nothin'.
     
mduell
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May 22, 2012, 03:49 PM
 
You forgot "again" in your title, this is their second F9/Dragon flight.

Originally Posted by olePigeon View Post
SpaceX is the first non-taxpayer funded entity to successfully venture into this realm. SpaceX's policy is that any cost overruns are covered by SpaceX, not by tax dollars.
You forgot OSC.

Originally Posted by olePigeon View Post
SpaceX's whole operation was done in the U.S., using American labor and American engineering. Even with SpaceX covering cost overruns, they were able to successfully launch and (hopefully) deliver a payload cheaper than China could. Even China said it could not compete with SpaceX's price to deliver payloads. China! That floors me.
SpaceX has access to a lot of talent and OTS hardware China does not. This doesn't take anything way from their feat of matching OSC's prices, but explains why China can not (yet).
     
finboy
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May 23, 2012, 02:53 PM
 
Originally Posted by olePigeon View Post
Pretty darn cool

I'm sure I'm just getting caught up in the excitement, but I can't help it.
It IS exciting. I hope we'll see things take off after this. There's still a significant talent pool out there that could really get things going.
     
The Godfather
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May 24, 2012, 12:01 AM
 
That South African Elon Musk should be knighted or whatever.
     
olePigeon  (op)
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May 25, 2012, 02:17 PM
 
Dragon successfully docked with the ISS. They're running pressurization testing. Next they'll load the capsule with returning cargo and send it back.
"…I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than
you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods,
you will understand why I dismiss yours." - Stephen F. Roberts
     
ebuddy
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May 27, 2012, 11:00 AM
 
Wait 'til this burgeoning private industry actually exploits a capitalist venture previously untapped by the government. It will be so highly regulated so as to ensure it cannot compete with the government and we'll be back to square one by 2022. This is the way of things.

Exciting for a time though. Good post.
ebuddy
     
The Godfather
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May 29, 2012, 10:18 PM
 
The spaceship is owned by private owners. There's nothing that could prevent them from offering their service in another country.
     
mduell
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May 29, 2012, 11:37 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Godfather View Post
The spaceship is owned by private owners. There's nothing that could prevent them from offering their service in another country.
ITAR... multiple items on the USML... AECA...
     
   
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