According to the Flightglobal SpaceTrak database, at 78 orbital launch attempts in 2012, there were six less launches than in the previous year. With 139 spacecraft on these flights (Shenzhou 9′s orbital module is counted as an autonomous spacecraft) there were two more launched in the year compared to 2011.This increase is mainly as a result of an increase in the number of small satellites of under 100kg (38 in 2012 compared to 23 in 2011) which were often launched as multiple payloads.
Tag Archives | falcon 9
Space Year Review 2012: Launch vehicles – Falcon 9, Delta IV and Soyuz show robustness in mishaps but not so for Safir or Proton
While the Falcon 9 launch vehicle of Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) is repidly becoming the commercial launch vehicle of choice due to its low price (though Arianespace remains market leader), satellite operators are still wary of Falcon 9 launch schedule delays. As such, some operators are now booking back up launches with other launch providers lest SpaceX cannot get their “birds” up on time.
The Orbcomm OG2-1 communications satellite which was stranded in a lower than planned orbit after the partial failure of the SpaceX Falcon 9 launch on 8 October 2012 invoving an first stage shutdown of one of the nine Merlin 1c engines, has now re-entered the atmosphere on 10 October at around 0619 GMT. The satellite was thought to have been insured to a value of circa $10 million and did not have enough fuel to recover the satellite to its planned operational orbit.
Slow motion film footage appears to show the Merlin 1c engine “letting go” emitting hot gases and eventualy causing debris to fall away. SpaceX notes that the engine stayed intact and that the debris was part of the rocket structure.
Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) and SES announced an agreement to launch three additional SES satellites, on SpaceX’s Falcon 9 or Falcon Heavy rockets.
This launch agreement – concluded through SES’ affiliate company SES-SL – adds to the luanch agreement siged in March 2011 for the launch by SpaceX of SES-8 in 2013. All four Falcon missions will support the enhancement of SES’ global fleet of satellites. The first of the new batch of SES/Space X launches is scheduled for 2015.
Flushed with success from its Falcon 9/Dragon launch to the International Space Station, Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) launch firm has announced that it now has a commercial launch contract with Intelsat to launch commercial communications satellites via its Falcon 9 Heavy rocket.
NASA’s new human spaceflight standards may not be as rigorous as those it already demands for high profile launches such as James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) or Cassini
VIDEO: SpaceX 13 March Falcon 9 Merlin engines test firing
Care of Space Fellowship here is the Space Exploration Technologies time lapse video of the roll out of its Falcon 9 flight one vehicle scheduled for launch from Cape Canaveral in the next couple of months
Much has been made of the support Norman Augustine’s commitee has given to commercial spaceflight but what hasn’t been talked about is the mystery booster
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