The cargo-laden Spacex Dragon spacecraft is being readied to head off the Earth so International Space Station astronauts can conduct science for the Earth as well as the Journey to Mars. Launch time today is 4:33 p.m. EDT from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station adjacent to Kennedy. The launch window is instantaneous for the Falcon 9 rocket that will loft the Dragon into space on course for the station. Both the rocket and spacecraft are products of SpaceX.
The weather remains the primary concern for today with the most recent report calling for a 60 percent chance of acceptable conditions at launch time.
In 2014, SpaceX twice successfully returned a Falcon 9 first stage from space and landed it in the Atlantic Ocean. Using lessons learned from those attempts, in January 2015 SpaceX attempted a precision landing on the drone ship, nicknamed “Just Read the Instructions”. The rocket made it to the drone ship, but landed hard. During a second precision landing attempt in February, this time over water, the rocket impressively came within 10 meters of its target. Unfortunately, extreme weather prevented recovery.
SOURCES – youtube, NASA, twitter, spacex
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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