Capitalism in space: SpaceX yesterday successfully completed the static fire dress rehearsal countdown for its planned Sunday Falcon 9 launch, which would be the third SpaceX launch in 9 days.
The article also provides some good information about the company’s efforts to recover the first stages and the fairings from the past two launches. For example:
This mission [the Florida launch of a Bulgarian satelltie] also included another test per SpaceX’s fairing recovery aspirations. Classed as the best attempt to date, SpaceX has added steerable parachutes to guide the fairing halves to the ocean surface, before it deploys a “bouncy castle” that protects it while it awaits recovery. The technology is still being refined, but Elon Musk believes full recovery could be achieved later this year.
From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.
Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.
The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.
He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.
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