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SpaceX Sets April 8 For Next Dragon Launch 42

schwit1 writes: SpaceX has scheduled April 8 for the next Falcon 9 launch, set to carry its first Dragon capsule since the launch failure last year. Though this is the most important news contained by the article, its focus is instead on the various preparations that SpaceX is doing at its Texas test facility to prepare for this launch as well as the increased launch rate required for the company to catch up on its schedule. Note that the Dragon launch will also be significant in that it will be carrying Bigelow's inflatable test module for ISS, built for only $17 million in less than two years. NASA, ESA, or JAXA would have required at least half a billion and several years to have accomplished the same.
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SpaceX Sets April 8 For Next Dragon Launch

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  • "... built for only $17 million in less than two years. NASA, ESA, or JAXA would have required at least half a billion and several years..."
    how long and how much will it take russians?
    after all they are ones who still have regular flights to iss on which this would be 'tested', and only ones still capable of transporting humans to space to test it.

    • RSC Energia has made press releases about its work on inflatable space station modules since 2013 and has not flown one yet, nor have they announced when they will fly one. There is so far no evidence that they are handling the project with more speed or lower cost than NASA, ESA, or JAXA, or indeed that the project will ever result in flown hardware.
    • Hopefully the crew situation will change next year with SpaceX, Boing and Sierra Nevada's offerings.

  • or the BA 2100. Wiki [wikipedia.org] Image [assets.bwbx.io]

    I still will never to this day understand why NASA dumped transhab.

  • After a childhood living on the wrong coast to watch shuttle launches, I'm finally within driving distance of a launch facility (live in Austin).

    Has anyone gone down to Brownsville to watch a launch? Any tips?

    -Chris

    • I have watched a few launches from the Cape, including the last shuttle launch. In my experience, these types of launches are less exciting than a shuttle launch. However, I would say that the best thing is to show up early and bring something to do while you're waiting around. You probably won't have too much of a crowd to compete against, but I don't know. I've never watched a Texas launch. If you want to film it, bring a tripod. You'll want to watch the launch itself with your mark 1 eyeball. It's

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