Category Archive: Space

Jun 25 2017

The Iridium-2 Mission Launches Successfully

This is the second mission in 2 days for SpaceX and its Falcon 9 rocket, in this case a launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, of the iridium-2 mission – a 10 satellite payload for Iridium communications. This mission, as those who pay attention to flights will know from the launch site, was …

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Jun 23 2017

SpaceX Successfully Launches BulgariaSat-1 And Re-flies Another Falcon 9 1st Stage

Same stuff, different day at SpaceX today with yet another launch from Pad 39A, this time of Bulgaria’s 1st satellite, BulgariaSat 1, to geosynchronous orbit. Yep, another communications satellite, but as mentioned, this is the 1st satellite made by Bulgaria, so that’s special: I hope it works out well for them and their needs! The …

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Jun 09 2017

Proton-M Makes Its First Flight Of 2017 – EchoStar 21

Back on the 7th of June (the 8th of June in Russia) the legendary Proton-M rocket made its first launch of 2017. This powerful booster hasn’t been launched in just shy of a year thanks to some manufacturing issues which would have put a launch into jeopardy; it looks like those issues have been solved. …

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Jun 07 2017

GSLV MK3 – India’s Most Powerful Rocket Yet

On June 5th, 2017, The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) successfully launched a payload on their most powerful rocket booster ever, the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle MK3. As the name suggessts, this is a booster designed to launch satellites into Geosynchronous orbits (orbit’s that stay in position over a particular spot of the planet) or, …

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Jun 05 2017

SpaceX CRS-11 Successfully Launches And Docks With The International Space Station

On June 3rd, 2017, yet another Falcon 9 booster launched from LC-39A at Kennedy Space Center, this time carrying the 11th SpaceX Commercial Resupply mission to the International Space Station. This mission is noteworthy for 2 reasons: This is the 100th launch from LC-39A, which was first used for the Apollo 4 Saturn V launch …

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Jun 02 2017

Expedition 51 Returns From The International Space Station

While I’m quite apt to cover launches of missions to the International Space Station, I often times don’t address the fact that 6 months later the Space Station crews return home in the Soyuz craft that took them up there to begin with. Today, the crew of Expedition 51, Peggy Whitson, Oleg Novitskiy and Thomas …

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May 29 2017

The Bird Watchers – 1966 USAF Film On Rocket Photography

Getting back to the grind, we might as well start with this video, uploaded today , which is a digital conversion of a 1966 film about the process of filming and photographing rocket launches at Vandernberg Air Force Base. Launches from VAFB were more common than launches from the Eastern Test Range and Cape Canaveral …

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May 18 2017

48 Years Ago: The Launch of Apollo 10

On May 18th, 1969, John Young, Tom Stafford, and Gene Cernan began an 8 day mission that would act as a “dress rehearsal” for the planned manned landing on the Moon of Apollo 11. This flight was the 2nd of 4 that would be launched in 1969, and would serve to test the Lunar Module …

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May 16 2017

SpaceX Launches Its Heaviest Payload Yet – Inmarsat-5

Yesterday evening SpaceX launched Inmarsat-5 F4, the heaviest payload yet flown on a Falcon 9. Inmarsat-5 is yet another communications satellite, this one intended to provide increased network connectivity over Europe (to put it extremely simply). The vehicle was a Falcon 9 full thrust, and due to the record weight of the payload (for Falcon …

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May 14 2017

Space Shuttle Columbia: Second Flight – 1981 NASA Film on STS-2

On November 12th, 1981, the Space Shuttle Columbia was launched on the second flight of the Space Shuttle Program, a flight which also marks the first re-use of a crewed spacecraft – one of the key goals of the Shuttle Program. STS-2 marked the first use of the Remote Manipulator Arm (the “Canadarm”) , and …

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