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Falcon Heavy launches successfully for 1st time since 2019

Capitalism in space: SpaceX today successfully put a military reconnaissance satellite using its Falcon Heavy rocket, its first launch since 2019.

The two side boosters and core stage all made their first flight. The core stage was intentionally not recovered, as it needed to use all its fuel for getting the satellite to its orbit. The two side boosters successfully landed at SpaceX’s two landing sites at Cape Canaveral.

The leaders in the 2022 launch race:

50 SpaceX
47 China
18 Russia
8 Rocket Lab

American private enterprise now leads China 70 to 47, though it still trails the rest of the world combined 74 to 70.

This year’s 70 successful launches ties the previous high for the United States in a single year, set in 1966. With two months still left in the year, it looks like that record will be broken, by a lot.

Conscious Choice cover

Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!


From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.


“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.


All editions are available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all book vendors, with the ebook priced at $5.99 before discount. The ebook can also be purchased direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit, in which case you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.


Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95; Shipping cost for either: $5.00). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.


  • sippin_bourbon

    This was fun to watch. They had cameras on each booster.

    Watching from one booster, you could see the landing burn of the other.

    Lots of good shots on this one.

  • Cotour

    That was beautiful!

    Especially the booster landings.

    Q: At what point will the Chinese steal this tech ability to land those boosters from SpaceX?

    (Why can they not do this?)

    I am sure they are hard at work trying to do so.

  • Jeremy, Alabama

    A wonderful stat I read on arstechnica is that SpaceX now has more landings than launches this year!

  • Ray Van Dune

    I noticed that there was a distinct delay in the commencement of the boost-back burns between the two side boosters. This had the effect of introducing a delay between the two in all subsequent events up to touchdown.

    In the previous FH flights I was under the impression that everything happened much closer to simultaneously, although not perfectly so. I am sure this phasing was intentional, but I wonder what purpose it served?

  • sippin_bourbon


    Not only that, but watching the boosters separate, it SEEMED that there was about a .5 second delay between them. While watching I attributed that to signal delay. Now I am not so sure.

    After separation, nothing was simultaneous. Was still very cool.

  • Jeff Wright

    Maybe for filming purposes.

    I bet that center core bracing could take an oblique wing pivot an nose gear-with the landing legs replaced by a single B-52 landing gear bogie.

  • pawn

    Elon should keep the Falcon Heavy supported. In reality, I think it has a better chance of being accepted for human transportation than the Starship. The Star Ship death dive is baked into the cake and will really mess everything up when it finally happens.

    SpaceX has been so successful that they may have forgotten that Nemesis is quietly waiting. I’m hoping someone at a high level there realizes this but is going along with all the current optimism because that the thing to do right now.

  • TallDave

    from a programmer’s perspective, seeing boosters land simultaneously is mindblowing

    the PID loops controlling guidance must be incredible

    shows the power of tolerating failure — remember, SpaceX crashed dozens of very expensive rockets perfecting that technology at a time when few thought reuse was possible

    to this day no one else has landed an orbital rocket and few are even trying

  • Star Bird

    Back in its Glory Days when NASA launched their rockets the Birds would fly about but always returned

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