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View Diary: SpaceX Scores Again (30 comments)

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  •  I'll admit it. I'm a SpaceX fanboy! (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eOz, xaxnar, thomask, eyesoars, FarWestGirl

    This launch couldn't have gone better!

    The ISS got an Easter Dragon full of cargo, the first stage made a huge milestone: the first soft-landing after doing its part to launch a payload into orbit.

    Before long, first-stages will be landing back at the cape, get a good inspection, and will be set up to do it all again.

    This is what the Shuttle promised to do, but couldn't do affordably.

    •  ... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      xaxnar, rduran, FarWestGirl

      So many good things about this:

      1) It doesn't require people in it to take off or land.
      2) They're working towards human-rating it.
      3) It can be configured in a variety of ways.
      4) Reusability -- coming soon!

      Even if reusability means that the rocket being re-used can't carry people, it would still be a huge win. Far closer to what the space shuttle was originally intended to be than anything I'm aware of before or since.

      •  And when you consider 2) is bullshit (0+ / 0-)

        it's even more impressive.

        •  asdf (0+ / 0-)

          Given that the space shuttle was "human rated" by NASA, it seems not to be worth much.

          SpaceX does seem to be doing the right things, however. I suspect and hope that they're not quite so wildly delusional about the statistical reliability of their rockets as NASA was about the space shuttle.

          I'm reassured by their basic design choices, their step-at-a-time approach, their continuous fixes, their upgrade paths, and their willingness to postpone flights in the face of issues. It all points at a solid engineering style by competent engineers.

          IMO rocketry will never reach the level of airline safety, but SpaceX seems oriented toward maximizing the safety that can be achieved.

          •  Gets even better (0+ / 0-)

            Space shuttle was never human rated.  In fact, the whole notion of "human rating" didn't exist until people started seriously talking about putting third party manned spacecraft in EELV fairings.  In fairness, that was around the same time Columbia blew up, but let's be honest.  Human rating is largely a way to import some of the Center-ATK-ULA ossification to the NewSpace upstarts.

          •  Rocketry can reach the level of airline safety (0+ / 0-)

            if we ever actually settle on a meaningful standard of safety and ramp of flight rates by like a factor of a million.

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