In less than two weeks, the ground-breaking Inspiration4 mission is scheduled to launch a Crew Dragon spacecraft into orbit with four crew members, none of whom are professional astronauts. Crew Dragon for this mission is equipped with a glass cupola to give the crew the best possible view during their three-day stay in Earth orbit. What have we learned so far about the largest window to ever be flown to space?
Just one month after the Starship SN9 test flight, its successor SN10 launched. This time, SpaceX got much closer to a complete success. SN10 was the first prototype to land in one piece, although it exploded a few minutes later. Elon Musk later explained why the landing was not successful.
Hans Koenigsmann is responsible for the reliability of rocket launches and safety of flight operations at SpaceX. He was born in Germany and was instrumental in the creation of Elon Musk’s company when he became one of the first employees. He did a little bit of everything at the beginning.
SpaceX reached a new milestone recently when a Falcon 9 booster launched for the sixth time and then landed safely. How many more times can this booster launch? What’s the theoretical limit? And how much does it actually cost SpaceX to refurbish a Falcon 9 booster between launches and what does this process entail?
Over the years, Elon Musk has played with the idea of making Falcon’s second stage reusable but it never materialized. Sadly, development of this new method has been eventually abandoned. In this article, we aim to shine some light on Musk’s past statements about Falcon’s second stage reusability and explain why it is such a difficult task.
SpaceX has been working for years towards recovering and reusing payload fairings. Each fairing half is equipped with a steerable parafoil and thrusters which allow the fairings to land in the ocean or on a ship with a net. This list contains all fairing recovery attempts and will be updated over time.