Space transport roundup – March.8.2019

A sampling of recent items related to traveling to and through space:

** SpaceX:

**** The Crew Dragon splashes down in the Atlantic off the coast of Florida: Crew Dragon Splashes Down in Atlantic Ending First Commercial Crew Mission – Space Station

“SpaceX’s Crew Dragon splashes down in the Atlantic Ocean after successful Demo-1 flight on March 8, 2019.”

**** The DM-1 mission was a great success. Everything from beginning to end seemed to go smoothly and according to plan. A video of  highlights of DM-1:

**** The closing of the hatch of the Crew Dragon 2 last night in preparation for its departure:

**** The Crew Dragon departs from the ISS in this video:

A view from the ISS of the Crew Dragon shortly after it left the station to return to earth. Note that the circle at the top is the nose-cap in the open position.

**** Some recent articles about the mission:

**** The first stage booster of the DM-1 Falcon 9 is shown in this SpaceX photo as it came in for a landing on the ocean platform:

Crew Demo-1 Mission

**** The booster returns to Port Canaveral in this video (via

**** An overview of SpaceX launch plans for the next few months: Falcon Heavy and Starlink headline SpaceX’s upcoming manifest –

****  StarHopper moves to launch pad. Meanwhile, work continues at SpaceX’s facilities at Boca Chica Beach near Brownsville, Texas on the company’s next-generation launch system. While the Crew Dragon recovery was underway in the Atlantic, the booster section of the StarHopper low altitude test vehicle was slowly transported from the construction yard to the site of the launch pad:

StarHopper booster moves to the site of the launch pad at Boca Chica Beach.

[ Update: This move was reportedly due to plans for a pressure test of the propellant tanks. Once that is safely finished, it will be moved back to the construction yard.] The propulsion system with the Raptor engines have not yet been installed. A new nosecone is also under construction to replace the one damaged when it was overturned by high winds.

** The launch of the reusable SARGE rocket last Saturday by EXOS Aerospace went well overall, though it failed to reach the planned altitude. Strong winds at liftoff caused the rocket to move outside its allowed range and the guidance system turned off the engine before it completed its burn. The rocket was recovered via paraglider return and will launch again.

** Linkspace tests vertical takeoff and landing rocket in China:

** Generation Orbit X-60A hypersonic text vehicle project makes a step forward with the completion of the critical design reveiw: X-60A hypersonic flight research vehicle program completes critical design review – Generation Orbit

** Ariane 6 gets a OneWeb launch contract: OneWeb announced as customer for inaugural Ariane 6 launch – Spaceflight Now


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