SpaceX Falcon Heavy Launch

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All the Wild dang We're Going to Do in Space and Physics in 2018 (forum censors the original title)
Featuring all the interplanetary probes and various missions and milestones closer to Earth, the Event Horizon Telescope, Gaia, and a couple of things not directly related to space or spaceflight.


Falcon Heavy is vertical on its pad.
ltezFzB.jpg

https://imgur.com/gallery/PkZ9D


Angola's first satellite failed quickly after launch, by the way.
 

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"A joint effort between the European and Japanese space agencies, called BepiColombo, will see a spacecraft launched towards Mercury in November.

upload_2017-12-29_12-4-38.gif

Artist’s impression of BepiColombo in orbit around Mercury. (Image: ESA)

After it arrives in late 2025, the craft will deploy a pair of orbiters: the Mercury Planetary Orbiter (MPO) and the Mercury Magnetosphere Orbiter (MMO).
"

Will it really take that long (~8 ys)?!
 

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Reaching the Mercury orbit is hard, you have to get rid of a lot of angular momentum. Wikipedia has a timeline.
"after a flyby of Earth, two flybys of Venus, and six flybys of Mercury."
That explains it. Otherwise it wouldn't make sense.
 
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The maiden flight of Falcon Heavy has a launch date: February 6th, 18:30-21:30 UTC (this post is made Jan 28, 11:11 UTC)

Its payload, up to 63,800 kg, is more than twice the payload of the most powerful rocket in operation, the Delta IV Heavy.

There will be a livestream. I don't know what exactly they will show because there will be so many things going on: The two side boosters will return to the launch site and land nearly simultaneously, the core will land on a barge in the ocean a bit later, meanwhile the second stage will push Musk's car on an interplanetary trajectory.
 
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  • #6
Borg
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the second stage will push Musk's car on an interplanetary trajectory
I can't help but be reminded of the opening scene of the movie Heavy Metal.

 
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The Electron rocket had ignition already, but the attempt was aborted, and after a few more delays the launch was shifted to the first quarter of 2018. We still get the second attempt to get SS-520 in orbit after the failure in January, unless that is shifted as well.
Both launched and reached orbit in the meantime, SS-520 today.

Electron is the first rocket with an electric turbopump to reach orbit, and the first orbital launch from the southern hemisphere in several decades. RocketLab claims they can launch more than one rocket per week, targeting the small satellite and cubesat market with the payload of up to 200 kg. The Electron rocket has a mass of 10.5 tonnes.

SS-520 is the smallest and lightest rocket to ever reach orbit, with a total mass of just 2.6 tonnes, a height of 9.5 meters and a diameter of just 52 cm. You might be able to reach fully around it with your arms (163 cm circumference). It can deliver just 4 kg to orbit - still enough for a cubesat that doesn't find a launch opportunity elsewhere.


SpaceX plans to do about half of the planned 30 launches in 2018 with reused boosters.

The planned FH launch is just 3 days 2 hours away.
 
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  • #9
berkeman
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That link so far is just animations (maybe it will switch to live coverage closer to the launch).

Here is another link:
https://www.space.com/39604-spacex-falcon-heavy-rocket-test-flight-webcast.html
https://www.space.com/17933-nasa-television-webcasts-live-space-tv.html
The launch window stretches from 1:30 to 4 p.m. EDT (1830 to 2100 GMT). You can watch the launch live here on Space.com, courtesy of SpaceX, beginning at 1:10 p.m. EST (1810 GMT). Weather conditions are currently at 80 percent "go" for today, and 70 percent for a backup launch time tomorrow, according to the 45th Space Wing's Weather Squadron, which monitors weather for air and space operations at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station and Kennedy Space Center.
 
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  • #10
Borg
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  • #11
OmCheeto
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Launch is now scheduled for 2:50 EST.
Cause for the delay?
Via Twitter:

Elon Musk 30 minutes ago
Upper atmosphere winds currently 20% above max allowable load. Holding for an hour to allow winds to diminish. ...​
 
  • #14
davenn
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5 minutes to launch !!!!!

live here

 
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  • #17
davenn
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WOW outstanding launch !! :smile:
 
  • #20
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Looks like a success! Amazing footage!!!
the 2 boosters landed together perfectly timed
 
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The shots of the car above earth is hilarious and stunning!
 
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  • #23
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The simultaneous landing of the two boosters was amazing.

The mission is not fully done yet, the second stage will fire again in about six hours. It is still an important step: It demonstrates that the second stage now survives long enough to do direct insertion to geostationary orbit if the customer wants that.
 
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  • #25
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NO ... it was live
Apparently, we are still live:

 
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