The competition heats up: SpaceX releases spectacular footage of another vertical take-off and landing test of their Falcon 9R rocket, this time flying over 3,000 feet in the air.
Video below the fold. What I think everyone, including me, has missed so far about both the Grasshopper and the Falcon 9R test flights is that the test vehicle not only was able to land safely using its rockets, both vehicles were quickly turned around and flown again. This certainly lends weight to the feasibility of the company’s plan to make their first stage reusable.
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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