NASA has ordered the first mission by SpaceX's Crew Dragon spacecraft to ferry astronauts from Cape Canaveral to the International Space Station. This is the second mission planned with a private company under the Commercial Crew Transportation Capability (CCtCap) contracts, which guarantees at least four such orders with two companies. The launch is scheduled for late 2017.
SpaceX has completed design testing of its SuperDraco engines, which, as a key element of the Crew Dragon's launch abort system (LAS), would be responsible for carrying a crew of astronauts out of harms way in the event of a launch failure.
An Israeli team has become the first to produce a "verified launch contract" as part of the Google Lunar XPRIZE. To win the competition, privately funded teams must land an exploratory robot on the moon by Dec. 31, 2017. SpaceIL's lunar effort would become the first private mission to the moon, as well the first from Israel.
Last year, SpaceX unveiled its Crew Dragon, which is scheduled to begin ferrying astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS) in 2017. Now the company is giving the public a look at the interior. Sporting a minimalist design, it's intended to not only provide safety, but a considerable degree of comfort.
On June 28, SpaceX suffered a major setback when its unmanned CRS-7 mission carrying supplies to the International Space Station (ISS) exploded shortly after liftoff. In a press conference today, SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk laid out the preliminary findings of the post-flight investigation which indicate the cause may have been a faulty strut.
NASA has announced the names of the first astronauts to ride into space aboard the first generation of commercial spacecraft that will return manned launch capabilities to American soil. With the selection process complete, the astronauts are set to begin a stringent training program in preparation for the 2017 launch of Boeing's CST-100 spacecraft.
Another resupply mission to the International Space Station (ISS) ended in failure today as SpaceX's CRS-7 mission exploded in midair shortly after liftoff. The unmanned Dragon cargo ship atop a Falcon 9 rocket launched from Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at 10:21 am EDT. SpaceX launch control indicated no problems prior to launch and weather was good, but approximately 2 min 18 sec into the flight, the Falcon 9 experienced an anomaly and broke up over the Atlantic Ocean.
In 2013, Elon Musk released a white paper outlining his Hyperloop concept, a new form of high speed mass transit that he apparently cooked up in his spare time away from running SpaceX and Tesla Motors. A handful of startups have sprung up to pursue building their own Hyperloop and now SpaceX says it will spur the efforts along by building a 1-mile long test track and hosting a competition for university and independent teams to build their own Hyperloop transport pod prototypes.
SpaceX has released stunning footage from a GoPro camera tumbling back to Earth following a recent Falcon 9 launch. The device, fitted in a section of composite fairing that separated from the launch vehicle soon after lift-off, recorded breathtaking views of our planet.
SpaceX has released on-board footage of its successful Crew Dragon Launch Abort System (LAS) test that took place at Launch Complex 40 of the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station earlier this month. The success of the company's innovative new design of LAS represents a vital stepping stone in the spacecraft's road to becoming human rated. The newly released footage shows in real time the dramatic life saving contingency that would be triggered should a critical error be detected in the rocket below in a launch scenario.