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Space Transportation

2013 Will Be a Big Year For Private Spaceflight 62

Posted by Soulskill
from the rocket-and-roll dept.
An article at Space.com forecasts an important year for private space companies in 2013. SpaceX is working on a new version of its Dragon capsule that is quite different from the current model. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said that the first iteration looked similar to other space capsules because the SpaceX team was learning as they went. Now, they're drawing on the expertise they've gained to tailor the new capsule to their needs. "Musk described Dragon version 2 as having 'legs that pop out' and added that it uses parachutes and its eight SuperDraco thrusters for a 'propulsive landing.'" The capsule will hold up to seven people, and they hope to win a crew transportation contract for getting NASA astronauts up to the ISS. The bidding for that contract starts in the second half of 2013. Commercial space planes are also set to reach new heights in 2013. XCOR Aerospace will be building its Lynx I rocket plane, and a spokesman said, "we’ll be doing test fights throughout the year from early 2013 and then go into commercial flights." Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo will also undergo its first rocket-powered flight this year.
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2013 Will Be a Big Year For Private Spaceflight

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  • Re:Wait. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 01, 2013 @07:14PM (#42446203)

    Since Unity was the default window manager and forced onto upgrade versions, nobody except for 3 people will be installing ubuntu this year.

    It is important for the nerds here to not have a circle-jerk over private space travel - From both design and commercial passenger perspectives, private space travel is only a hobby for the rich who have nothing else to do, kinda like how Romney ran for president. Some people run for president, some design rockets, and some pay hundreds of thousands of dollars a pop to ride in those rockets. This is reinventing and monetizing the wheel, not anything profound like colonization.

    All while your kids are eating ramen noodles for dinner and you're wondering how you're gonna pay for that auto repair and next month's rent.

    -- Ethanol-fueled

  • Go Big or Go Home (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 01, 2013 @10:18PM (#42447307)

    Legs aren't nearly as much dead weight as wings are. Furthermore, even winged vehicles have legs in the form of landing gear. SpaceX is just being efficient and going by the numbers.

    Hell, if Musk had been born 30 years earlier, we'd all be on Mars by now.

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