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  [Discuss] SpaceX Crew Dragon Demo-1 mission (Page 1)

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Author Topic:   [Discuss] SpaceX Crew Dragon Demo-1 mission
Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-21-2018 09:53 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Please use this topic to discuss SpaceX's Crew Dragon Demonstration Mission-1 (Demo-1) uncrewed flight test to the International Space Station.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-21-2018 09:58 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From a NASA press release:
The launch of SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon spacecraft is targeted for Jan. 7, 2019, from historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

This will be the first uncrewed test flight of the Commercial Crew Program and will provide data on the performance of the Falcon 9 rocket, Crew Dragon spacecraft, and ground systems, as well as on-orbit, docking and landing operations. The flight test also will provide valuable data toward NASA certifying SpaceX's crew transportation system for carrying astronauts to and from the space station.

Above: Illustration of SpaceX's Crew Dragon spacecraft launching atop the company's Falcon 9 rocket from historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. (SpaceX)

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-21-2018 01:16 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From Stephen Clark/Spaceflight Now on Twitter:
Assuming this date [Jan. 7, 2019] holds (a strong uncertainty for any launch, and especially for a crew capsule test flight), launch would occur around 11:57pm EST, roughly the moment Earth's rotation brings launch pad 39A under the space station's orbital plane.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 12-18-2018 03:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
New photos of Crew Dragon for Demo-1, which is targeted for launch on Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019. (Credit: SpaceX)

Robert Pearlman
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posted 01-03-2019 08:32 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
SpaceX on Thursday (Jan. 3) rolled out a Falcon 9 rocket topped with its first Crew Dragon to Pad 39A for a series of fit checks prior to the Demo-1 test flight.

The rocket is expected to go vertical later in the day.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 01-05-2019 05:48 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From Elon Musk on Twitter (on Jan. 5):
About a month away from the first orbital test flight of crew Dragon.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 01-06-2019 02:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From Elon Musk on Twitter:
Falcon 9 on launch pad with Crew Dragon and new astronaut walkway.
Asked if there will be cameras in the walkway for launch, Musk replied:
Yes, will be extremely intense. Early flights are especially dangerous, as there's a lot of new hardware.

Aeropix
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posted 01-07-2019 07:01 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Aeropix   Click Here to Email Aeropix     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
That height limit sign is pure Elon! Well done for that!

Headshot
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posted 01-09-2019 07:55 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Headshot   Click Here to Email Headshot     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Will the continuing government shutdown affect SpaceX's timetable? I am assuming that some government personnel will be required to launch this demo.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 01-09-2019 09:17 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yes, as noted above, the launch has already slipped from NET Jan. 17 into early February, in part because of the shutdown.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 02-05-2019 03:17 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
A SpaceX filing with the FCC "for Dragon2 capsule telemetry, tracking, and command, for the upcoming SpaceX Commercial Crew vehicle demonstration mission" appears to indicate a slip of the launch to no earlier than March 2.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 02-06-2019 11:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
NASA today confirmed the new date:
The agency now is targeting March 2 for launch of SpaceX's Crew Dragon on its uncrewed Demo-1 test flight.

Headshot
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posted 02-06-2019 05:50 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Headshot   Click Here to Email Headshot     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What is the likelihood of this date being pushed even further back if there is another government shutdown?

Robert Pearlman
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posted 02-06-2019 06:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I would say there is a pretty good likelihood of the date slipping further, regardless if there is another government shutdown or not.

Headshot
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posted 02-07-2019 08:01 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Headshot   Click Here to Email Headshot     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
"Worst" case scenario, the launch dates for the SpaceX Crew Dragon Demo Flight 1 and the Boeing Starliner OFT start to converge. Can they both be launched the same day or is there a minimum interval between launches imposed by the Eastern Test Range, NASA, and other agencies? Also, would both vehicles use the same docking port on the ISS?

Robert Pearlman
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posted 02-07-2019 08:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
There are two docking ports available for U.S. commercial crew vehicles to use and there may be a time in the future when both types of vehicles are at the station at the same time, but for these initial demo flights, it is unlikely NASA will support dual docked operations. If they are both ready to fly at the same time, it is likely one will have to stand down until the other has left the station.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 02-15-2019 12:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex release
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex Offers Special Viewing Opportunities for the Commercial Crew SpaceX Demonstration Mission 1 (Demo-1) Launch

Packages include launch parties, commemorative gifts, live commentary and more.

Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex is kicking off a new era of space exploration, offering exclusive viewing packages for the upcoming Commercial Crew SpaceX Demonstration Mission 1 (Demo-1) launch. This mission is significant as it will be the first, uncrewed test flight of NASA's Commercial Crew Program, which will carry men and women into space from American soil for the first time since 2011. At Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, guests will have the opportunity to experience the awe and excitement of these historic launches just a few miles from the launch pad – the closest public viewing.

"This is the first of many enhanced viewing opportunities to come," said Therrin Protze, chief operating officer, Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. "With crewed launches on the horizon, the interest in space continues to grow and we are poised to offer many more bucket-list experiences to our guests."

The Demo-1 launch is the first uncrewed test flight of SpaceX's Crew Dragon spacecraft, which is set to lift off from Kennedy Space Center's famed launchpad 39A, the same launchpad from which Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong set course for the moon on Apollo 11 in 1969 nearly 50 years ago. The packages are designed to enhance the overall launch viewing experience.

The SpaceX Demo-1 launch experience packages are:

Package: "Feel the Heat"
Location: Apollo/Saturn V Center
Cost: $195 per person

Package includes*:

  • Two-day admission to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, plus transportation to Apollo/Saturn V Center viewing location – the closest launch viewing location available to the public. Second day admission must be used within a 90-day period post-launch.
  • Up-close encounters with the Mars Rover Vehicle Navigator®, a futuristic concept vehicle, and a lunar rover just like the ones used by Apollo astronauts
  • Premium catered meal
  • (2) Drink tickets
  • Lanyard and commemorative Demo-1 badge
  • Commemorative Demo-1 lithograph
  • SpaceX luggage tag
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Digital photo on the day of the launch with special background
  • Jumbotron access and live, expert commentary of launch
  • Full access to the shows and exhibits at the Apollo/Saturn V Center

Package: "Feel the Fun"
Location: Space Shuttle Atlantis® North Lawn viewing
Cost: $115 per person

Package includes*:

  • Two-day admission to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. Second day admission must be used within a 90-day period post-launch.
  • Launch viewing from the Space Shuttle Atlantis North Lawn viewing location
  • Catered meal
  • SpaceX luggage tag
  • Commemorative Demo-1 lithograph
  • Jumbotron access and live, expert commentary of launch
  • Digital photo on the day of the launch with special background
  • Launch party featuring a live DJ
  • Junior astronaut activity
Ticket packages are sold for the specific mission (SpaceX Demo-1) and not for a specific date. Packages can be booked via the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex website here. The limited-availability packages will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis.

This is the first of many launches to come. Packages for future launches will be customized to enhance the unique components of each mission.

*Guests are encouraged to check the website for updates as packages may be expanded.

denali414
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posted 02-15-2019 02:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for denali414   Click Here to Email denali414     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
With all the scheduled launches over next few years, this will be a nice pop to the pocketbook.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 02-26-2019 11:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The official weather forecast issued by the Air Force on Tuesday (Feb. 26) called for a 80 percent chance of acceptable conditions at launch time (2:49 a.m. EST on Saturday, March 2). The primary concerns are cumulus and thick clouds.

Should the launch be delayed, the next earliest attempt will be Tuesday, March 5, when the forecast calls for a 60 percent chance of acceptable conditions, adding precipitation as a concern.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-01-2019 02:11 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The anthropomorphic test device (ATD) flying aboard DM-1 is named "Ripley" after Sigourney Weaver's character in "Alien."

Neil DC
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posted 03-01-2019 11:24 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Neil DC   Click Here to Email Neil DC     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Maybe I missed in somewhere in the discussion. I am assuming that the actual manned version will have a launch escape rocket. Why is it not on this demo?

328KF
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posted 03-01-2019 01:19 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 328KF   Click Here to Email 328KF     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The escape system consists of the Super Draco rockets around the base of the spacecraft (right down where the fueling explosion of 2016 originated). It’s a pusher system as opposed to a tractor rocket like Apollo. They were also intended to allow a powered landing, but that idea has been abandoned.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-01-2019 01:48 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
SpaceX conducted a pad abort test using a boilerplate Crew Dragon in 2015. An inflight abort test is planned for later this year using the DM-1 Crew Dragon and the Falcon 9 first stage that made its third flight with SpaceIL's Beresheet lunar lander.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-01-2019 10:43 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From Elon Musk on Twitter:
Super high tech zero-g indicator added just before launch!

The source of the plush toy is Celestial Buddies' Earth.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-01-2019 10:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
SpaceX Crew Dragon Demo-1 launch webcast:

AstroCasey
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posted 03-02-2019 02:36 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for AstroCasey     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Cool launch! I liked how SpaceX and NASA did the webcast together. Hopefully they do this format again in the future.

GACspaceguy
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posted 03-02-2019 05:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for GACspaceguy   Click Here to Email GACspaceguy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It was a very long day, up at 5:30, drive to Titusville, to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex by 10 p.m. at the Apollo/Saturn V Center at 11 p.m. or so, nearly 4 hours standing by the fence trying to stay awake, but it was all worth it for an on time launch. First steps back to sending astronauts back to the ISS from USA soil!!

It was a spectacular launch with sky a blaze so much that the fish where jumping in the Banana River.

For those who have not been to a Falcon 9 launch you should know that it is a loud thunderous launch from those nine Merlin engines.

denali414
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posted 03-02-2019 07:41 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for denali414   Click Here to Email denali414     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just watched the taped launch, wish I was there for it. Going to try and make the next one. So great to see rockets going back to ISS and Moon from US soil.

issman1
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posted 03-02-2019 03:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for issman1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
How far from Pad 39A was the lightning seen in the final moments before lift off?

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-02-2019 05:41 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The cell was well to the east of the pad and out over the ocean. Depending on where spectators were, it set up an optical illusion the lightning was in the proximity of the launch complex.

Hart Sastrowardoyo
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posted 03-03-2019 09:24 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
How much of a life-support system has been installed - some, or did they go all-up as though they'd be flying a crew even though they weren't? In other words, in case of emergency, could the ISS crew abort and leave the station using the Crew Dragon if they had to?

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-03-2019 10:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Demo-1 Crew Dragon is only outfitted with a partial life support system. According to SpaceX, the system is enough to meet the objectives of the DM-1 mission, but is not the complete system that will fly on DM-2.

The Crew Dragon is also without the complete software to run its crew control systems, and its reentry profile has yet to tested (beyond computer models) and so the spacecraft is not in a configuration to return to Earth with astronauts aboard.

JohnPaul56
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posted 03-04-2019 12:13 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for JohnPaul56     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Will there be any other unmanned tests to completely evaluate the environmental systems and software for reentry? Or does SpaceX feel confident enough to fly with men on board for the next launch?

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-04-2019 12:39 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
SpaceX and NASA said the data collected from DM-1 will be sufficient to know whether Crew Dragon's systems are ready to proceed with flying astronauts.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-04-2019 01:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From Expedition 58 flight engineer Anne McClain on the International Space Station (via Twitter):
he dawn of a new era in human spaceflight.

From Expedition 58 commander Oleg Kononenko on the International Space Station (via Roscosmos):

SkyMan1958
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posted 03-04-2019 03:44 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SkyMan1958   Click Here to Email SkyMan1958     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The "pop-top" of the Dragon 2 seems an obvious area of potential failure. Does anyone know if Dragon 2 can successfully re-enter the Earth's atmosphere if the top does not swing back into place after undocking?

Aeropix
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posted 03-06-2019 04:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Aeropix   Click Here to Email Aeropix     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As to the "flip top," I think of this system like the space shuttle cargo bay doors or landing gear. These two systems were so important to the mission success that multiple redundant actuators were installed to ensure that these critical parts worked as planned.

Fast forward from shuttle era to today, and there are systems that are so reliable and redundant that failure has been essentially ruled out for those niche systems. An example, the new Boeing 777-8/9 variant coming out this year relies on computer control of the flight controls to reduce loads on the wing, which can therefore be built lighter. When I asked a Boeing engineer about the implications of flying through moderate turbulence if the load relief system failed, he explained that the failure modes were so well understood that the failure possibility could essentially be ruled out.

That isolated system robustness can be essentially guaranteed on a particular system with modern tech seems to be a trend in Aerospace these days. For the shuttle, no shuttle door or landing gear had ever failed, giving credence to this design philosophy. As to the example of the 777 and other modern airliners, there are millions of hours of flight proven data that also seems to support this new philosophy of "designing out" failure modes in isolated systems.

Whether you agree with this or not (I am still ambivalent about it), that is the "new way" in aerospace. I'm guessing that this philosophy has been applied to the flip-top on the Crew Dragon.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-07-2019 09:54 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Additional photos from Crew Dragon's approach and docking via NASA:

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-07-2019 11:42 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The hatch leading into the DM-1 Crew Dragon was closed at 12:39 a.m. EST on Thursday (March 7).

Undocking is scheduled for 2:31 a.m. EST on Friday (March 8), following by a deorbit burn at 7:50 a.m. EST and a splashdown at 8:45 a.m. EST.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-08-2019 01:22 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by SkyMan1958:
Does anyone know if Dragon 2 can successfully re-enter the Earth's atmosphere if the top does not swing back into place after undocking?
The nose cone can be jettisoned if it cannot be closed.


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