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04/04/2017 – Ephemeris – First relaunch and recovery of a rocket booster

April 4, 2017 Comments off

Ephemeris for Tuesday, April 4th.  The Sun will rise at 7:17.  It’ll be up for 12 hours and 56 minutes, setting at 8:14.  The Moon, 1 day past first quarter, will set at 4:24 tomorrow morning.

Last Thursday SpaceX launched a communications satellite, SES-10 toward geostationary orbit using a used Falcon 9 first stage booster, that landed last April.  To them it’s not a used rocket but a flight proven booster.  Elon Musk, SpaceX CEO is not going to try launch this booster a third time, but will give it to the Cape Kennedy Visitors Center.  Re-usability is the key, according to Musk to his plans to get to Mars and to possibly reduce the cost of getting payloads into orbit by as much as 30% than his already lowest prices in the industry.  Besides landing the booster on their automated drone ship, they were able to recover the two halves of the fairing that protects a satellite as it ascends through the atmosphere.

Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

SES-10 launch

The second launching of this particular booster with the SES-10 satellite. Credit SpaceX video feed.

Landing No. 2

The video feed cut out during the landing of the booster, but the next shot was of the booster standing upright on the drone ship. Credit SpaceX video feed.