SpaceX is about to launch the Falcon 1 rocket for the first time – History in the making (I hope)

I’m just watching the live feed of the SpaceX‘s Falcon 1 rocket launch.
I can’t even begin to describe what the impact of this whole move is if the launch succeeds as planned.

The Falcon 1 rocket is the first all American, built from scratch, rocket in the last 25+ years. It is built from new materials and its launch cost is $6.7 million which is about a quarter of what a launch will cost on a Delta II rocket or equivalent (even the Russian launch costs are higher than this the cost of launching Falcon 1).

In all of the times I tried to raise ideas and being to develop things related to satellites, the one thing that always hold me back was the fact that launching a satellite is VERY expensive and trying to piggy back on someone else’s launch is very cumbersome and risky (at least risky for the people that are launching the main payload in that rocket).

Maybe now the whole space exploration and satellite business will start taking off (hopefully, like the Falcon 1 rocket) and really revolutionize our lives.

The funny thing here is that there is a direct connection to the Hi-Tech software industry, SpaceX’s CEO and CTO is Elon Musk, the co-founder of PayPal which revolutionized the electronic payments over the internet.

I’ve been tracking SpaceX’s progress for the past 4 years (roughly about the time I had my first ideas about revolutionizing the satellite industry) and they have made an incredible progress.

I know what you are probably thinking “what does this crazy guy that have a .NET debugging blog and rants about various thing has to do with revolutionizing the satellite building industry”, well, in a short sentence a lot :-) but these are all things I’ll have to either implement or explain later when I’ll write my great book of unimplemented ideas ;-)

God Speed Falcon 1 and kudos to the whole SpaceX team!

Discovery is back, and in one piece

I’m so glad to see Discovery back in one piece.

I still remember Feb 1st 2003. It was my grandmother’s birthday and we were sitting in a nice restaurant at the northern part of Israel.

After eating, we went to visit a nice little place called “Hacula Vally” which was a swamp that was dried out in the 1920s or so but was now back to its (almost) original dimension.

We got a phone call from my cousin who went home instead of continuing for the short trip saying that there was something wrong with Columbia’s landing. We went back to the car, opened the radio and there was much confusion running around.

During the drive back home (which took around 2 hours or so) we finally heard the verdict and that pieces were photographed falling from the sky.

I’ve always considered myself a bit of a space enthusiast and it was a big blow under the belt for the American space program.

Unfortunately, since the cold war ended there is little to no progress in the manned space flight arena and its a shame.

I do hope that better Crew Exploration Vehicles will be built and used for the better future of all man kind.

I can’t name all the items that got into consumer usage due to the developments made for the space program and its a bad that such a good catalyst for innovation is no longer active in full force.

Just think of the fact that we used the 1950s-1960s technology to get to the moon in 1969 (although some thinks it was a hoax). The space shuttle is built using the 1970s technology with some additional features added in the 1980s.

The youngest shuttle, the Endeavour, is from 1991 (it was built to replace the Challanger after it blew up during take off in 1986).

Just imagine where we would be if we used the 1990s and 2000s technology today.
Gives you something to think about…