Scroll down to read this post.

 

Please consider supporting my work, as I take no advertisements nor accept any sponsors in order to keep the website clean, easy to read, and to avoid any accusations of conflict of interest. Your support leaves me entirely independent, able to say whatever I think while being free from censorship or reprisals.

 

You can support me either by giving a one-time contribution or a regular subscription. There are five ways of doing so:

 

1. Zelle: This is the only internet method that charges no fees. All you have to do is use the Zelle link at your internet bank and give my name and email address (zimmerman at nasw dot org). What you donate is what I get.

 

2. Patreon: Go to my website there and pick one of five monthly subscription amounts, or by making a one-time donation.
 

3. A Paypal Donation:

4. A Paypal subscription:


5. Donate by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman and mailed to
 
Behind The Black
c/o Robert Zimmerman
P.O.Box 1262
Cortaro, AZ 85652


Two launches today, one by ULA and one by China

Today there were two successful launches. First China launched a remote sensing satellite using its Long March 6 rocket that lifted off from its Taiyuan spaceport in the south of China.

No word on where the rocket’s lower stages and four strap-on boosters crashed inside China.

Shortly thereafter, ULA used its Atlas-5 rocket to place a reconnaissance satellite into orbit for the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), lifting off from Cape Canaveral.

For ULA, this was only its second launch in 2023. The leaders in the 2023 launch race are now as follows, with China’s total corrected:

63 SpaceX
42 China
12 Russia
7 Rocket Lab
7 India

In the national rankings, American private enterprise now leads China in successful launches 73 to 42. It also now leads the entire world combined, 73 to 67, while SpaceX by itself now trails the rest of the world (excluding American companies) only 63 to 67.

CORRECTION: Hat tip to reader John Foley (see his comment below), who noted that China’s total appeared to be one short. I went back and discovered I had missed a March 22, 2023 launch of a Kuaizhou 1A rocket from the Jiujian spaceport, placing four weather satellites in orbit. I have now added that launch to China’s total, and corrected the other numbers.

Genesis cover

On Christmas Eve 1968 three Americans became the first humans to visit another world. What they did to celebrate was unexpected and profound, and will be remembered throughout all human history. Genesis: the Story of Apollo 8, Robert Zimmerman's classic history of humanity's first journey to another world, tells that story, and it is now available as both an ebook and an audiobook, both with a foreword by Valerie Anders and a new introduction by Robert Zimmerman.

 
The ebook is available everywhere for $5.99 (before discount) at amazon, or direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit. If you buy it from ebookit you don't support the big tech companies and the author gets a bigger cut much sooner.


The audiobook is also available at all these vendors, and is also free with a 30-day trial membership to Audible.
 

"Not simply about one mission, [Genesis] is also the history of America's quest for the moon... Zimmerman has done a masterful job of tying disparate events together into a solid account of one of America's greatest human triumphs."--San Antonio Express-News

6 comments

  • john foley

    I believe China has 42 successful orbit launches.
    Jan 5, Feb 2, Mar 7, Apr 3, May 4, Jun 4, Jul 6, Aug 8, Sep 3

  • john foley: Did I miss one? I will check.

  • john Foley: You are correct. I missed a launch on March 22, 2023 by China of its Kuaizhou 1A rocket. I will add it and note the correction in this post.

  • Richard M

    Even without counting any Starship launches, 95 launches for the year looks attainable, if SpaceX keep up this pace. Which is astounding to think about.

  • Jeff Wright

    Had I Musk’s ear…I would’ve tried to get him to build Twitter’s worth of new Falcon pads in a row at Florida,

    Imagine ten launch pads, and 10 landing pads…

  • sippin_bourbon

    Jeff

    Imagine an single spaceport with that many launch and landing pads in general, all for commercial use, in general.
    I think the government fears this, personally. Less control.

    How effective would marine and aviation commerce be if every vessel that sailed or every plane that flew had to get explicit permission for every individual voyage. As it is, carriers get licensed, aviators and mariners get certified and licensed, and aircraft and vessels inspected, certified and licensed. But a license for every trip would be overwhelming.

    This is the model that should be pushed. SpaceX has proved that the frequency for such a model will be needed.

Readers: the rules for commenting!

 

No registration is required. I welcome all opinions, even those that strongly criticize my commentary.

 

However, name-calling and obscenities will not be tolerated. First time offenders who are new to the site will be warned. Second time offenders or first time offenders who have been here awhile will be suspended for a week. After that, I will ban you. Period.

 

Note also that first time commenters as well as any comment with more than one link will be placed in moderation for my approval. Be patient, I will get to it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *