SpaceX Crew-Dragon Demo-1 Mission Coming Soon

#11
(Mar 3, 2019 05:29 PM)Yazata Wrote: In the NASA photo below, apparently taken by a Space Station astronaut from the cupola, I'd say that the orange thing below the Crew Dragon (suckling contentedly on the station's breast) is a lens flare. MR would probably say that it's convincing evidence of... something else.


May have to wait up to five days before this one hits the rounds, like the "TR3B" of last year's docking procedure. OTOH, a round sun-colored shape like that may be dullsville for the tabloid/conspiracy circuit.

Triangular UFO filmed during SpaceX dragon mission (Dec 8, 2018)
https://www.disclose.tv/triangular-ufo-f...ion-355256

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#12
(Mar 3, 2019 03:36 AM)Yazata Wrote: I see where AstroAnnimal (astronaut Ann McClain, currently on the Space Station) says that she's ready to meet Ripley in 'person'.

And here she is entering the Crew Dragon and meeting Ripley

https://twitter.com/Space_Station/status...9847180288

Here's Canada's astronaut David St Jacques, monitoring the Crew Dragon's (mostly autonomous) approach from the Space Station's end, using a collection of laptops! I like to see them using off-the-shelf technology rather than paying some contractor untold millions to build an over-elaborate custom system. (It sounds like SpaceX might be rubbing off on NASA.) Check out all the camera gear velcro-ed to the wall next to this work station.


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https://twitter.com/Astro_DavidS

This little video clip from SpaceX showing the moment of docking is interesting

https://twitter.com/Space_Station/status...2033306624
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#13
Quote:May have to wait up to five days before this one hits the rounds, like the "TR3B" of last year's docking procedure. OTOH, a round sun-colored shape like that may be dullsville for the tabloid/conspiracy circuit.

Triangular UFO filmed during SpaceX dragon mission (Dec 8, 2018)
https://www.disclose.tv/triangular-ufo-f...ion-355256

That ufo looks alot like a piece of beef jerky which by coincidence I am chewing on now. Maybe Jack Links Bigfoot is around too. Smile
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#14
Russian Space Station cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko took a cool series of photos of the Crew Dragon arriving at the Space Station.


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Before the flight, Elon Musk announced that the capsule would be carrying a "super high tech" zero-G indicator device. It turned out to be a little children's plush-toy Earth with arms and legs, nicknamed "Little Earth".

Presumably Little Earth will be returning along with Ripley when the Crew Dragon departs the Station on Friday.

Astroannimal (astronaut Ann McClain) has been showing it around the space station. Here it is enjoying the cupola (the Space Station's viewing turret).


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Here's Little Earth enjoying morning coffee with the other astronauts. (Apparently that's a thing on the Station.)


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#15
Looks like they've put Little Earth to work. If you are gonna be on the Space Station, you gotta carry your load.

Little Earth helps David St. Jacques work on a 'constituent analyzer' (an automated chemical analysis machine, I'm guessing).

Edit: It's apparently a mass-spectrograph based device that analyzes the chemical composition of the air inside the station. Apparently it can be cranky and can break down and various parts need periodic change-outs.

https://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi....010634.pdf


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David familiarizes Little Earth with the gas masks that astronauts use in the unlikely chance there is an ammonia leak


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Astroannimal and Little Earth work on the station's plumbing. (I think that's the urine recycler behind the zero-G toilet. An 'eww job' for Little Earth.)


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Little Earth seemingly amazed by the laptops!


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Besides it being fun, I think that they want to appeal to little children with this. Astroannimal is asking for suggestions of what Little Earth should do tomorrow on her twitter page.
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#16
Astroannimal and Little Earth working out with the Space Station's treadmill. All the astronauts have a physical fitness program designed to prevent them from losing muscle mass and bone density in zero G.  


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The Crew Dragon, Ripley and Little Earth (who has really been the life of the party) are scheduled to depart the Space Station at 2:31 AM Friday EST/11:31 PM Thursday PST. NASA TV live coverage will begin 2:00 AM EST Friday/11:00 PM Thursday PST.

Deorbit burn will come at about 7:50 AM EST/4:50 AM PST. NASA TV will cover it live along with splashdown.

https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/schedule.html
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#17
Celestial Buddies has gone to a waitlist on (Little) Earths, with its current supply sold out.

"We at Celestial Buddies had no advance information about Earth’s participation in the launch, although a sudden flurry of orders for Earth in the 48 hours prior to liftoff had made us wonder if something was afoot," according to the statement on their website. "We apologize for our current lack of Earths...we have never had a product on backorder before...but we have never had one of our products launched into space before, and we were taken totally by surprise."

(Mar 7, 2019 05:35 AM)Yazata Wrote: Astroannimal and Little Earth working out with the Space S tation's treadmill. All the astronauts have a physical fitness program designed to prevent them from losing muscle mass and bone density in zero G.  


[Image: D0-4JwTXgAEgRwu.jpg]


The Crew Dragon, Ripley and Little Earth (who has really been the life of the party) are scheduled to depart the Space Station at 2:31 AM Friday EST/11:31 PM Thursday PST. NASA TV live coverage will begin 2:00 AM EST Friday/11:00 PM Thursday PST.

Deorbit burn will come at about 7:50 AM EST/4:50 AM PST. NASA TV will cover it live along with splashdown.

https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/schedule.html
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#18
(Mar 7, 2019 05:38 AM)C C Wrote: Celestial Buddies has gone to a waitlist on (Little) Earths, with its current supply sold out.

"We at Celestial Buddies had no advance information about Earth’s participation in the launch, although a sudden flurry of orders for Earth in the 48 hours prior to liftoff had made us wonder if something was afoot," according to the statement on their website. "We apologize for our current lack of Earths...we have never had a product on backorder before...but we have never had one of our products launched into space before, and we were taken totally by surprise."

They've sealed the hatch on the Crew Dragon in preparation for its departure tonight and I didn't see Little Earth inside!

https://twitter.com/Commercial_Crew/stat...8322797568  

(Mar 7, 2019 05:35 AM)Yazata Wrote: The Crew Dragon, Ripley and Little Earth (who has really been the life of the party) are scheduled to depart the Space Station at 2:31 AM Friday EST/11:31 PM Thursday PST. NASA TV live coverage will begin 2:00 AM EST Friday/11:00 PM Thursday PST. Deorbit burn will come at about 7:50 AM EST/4:50 AM PST. NASA TV will cover it live along with splashdown.

https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/schedule.html

Perhaps Little Earth and the astronauts have grown so attached that Little Earth decided to remain on the Station and return when they do. Or maybe Astroannimal and Little Earth have eloped. To Mars!


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NASA/SpaceX might not have foreseen that millions of little pre-school minds (like mine!) all around the world would be worrying about Little Earth's whereabouts.

https://www.space.com/astronaut-anne-mcc...earth.html

Edit: Florida Today, attuned to all things space, is reporting "Crew Dragon's hatch closes at 12:39 p.m. Thursday, and NASA announces the toy will continue its stay aboard the space station. Seems the little fellow has too much fun in space."

https://www.floridatoday.com/story/tech/...081581002/
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#19
Ripley and the Crew Dragon have returned safely to Earth (the big one), splashed down in the Atlantic and have been recovered by SpaceX's recovery ship.

Speaking of the little one, the people narrating the live feed spoke to one of the human astronauts who is going up this summer and he said that the idea is for Little Earth to return along with them.

This is a big step for the commercial crew program. Everything went absolutely flawlessly with SpaceX's Dragon. Next up is Boeing's Starliner which hopefully does as well. (Boeing has lots of experience with this stuff.)

A NASA tracking shot of the incandescent Dragon capsule reentering the atmosphere like a bolide. (This is when you really appreciate that PICA-X heat-shield ablator that CC was talking about in post #7.)


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And here it is splashing down at sea.


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The live-feed narrators spoke to the SpaceX commercial crew people who said that although there's a (rather spectacular) in-flight abort test upcoming (it will use this same Crew Dragon capsule that splashed down today), they aren't hugely concerned about it and expect it to go well (it's more NASA's thing, I guess). Their attention at Space X is turning to this summer's Demo-2 mission that will fly real human astronauts. They will be holding meetings going over all the reams of data from all aspects of this Demo-1 flight (they are engineers and they were laughing about how engineers live for data) with an eye towards doing it again for real.
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#20
(Mar 8, 2019 06:03 PM)Yazata Wrote: A NASA tracking shot of the incandescent Dragon capsule reentering the atmosphere like a bolide. (This is when you really appreciate that PICA-X heat-shield ablator that CC was talking about in post #7.)

It's definitely scorched. While it was pristine white when it launched and was at the Space Station, now it's toasted.


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One wonders what kind of damage it's sustained. Just superficial, nothing that a new exterior paint-job won't fix? Or something more fundamental that might impact reusability or even structural integrity? That's stuff that the engineers will have to examine very carefully.

I gather that this particular Crew Dragon is considered kind of expendable which is why they plan to use it for the abort test. It doesn't have the touch-screen control panels that astronauts will use (Ripley didn't need them) and it doesn't have the complete life-support system. But if they spend a lot of time examining it, that might slide the schedule for the abort test back and might mean that Demo-2 doesn't fly in July.
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