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NASA to grant SpaceX lease to historic launch pad

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NASA has selected SpaceX to be the exclusive lessee of the Kennedy Center's Launch Complex 39A.

December 16, 2013

Robert Z. Pearlman

 

1216-spacex_nasa-launch-pad_full_380.jpg

First and last launches, for now: The Apollo 4 Saturn V liftoff (left) and STS-135 space shuttle launch were the first and last to leave Launch Pad 39A in 1967 and 2011, respectively.

collectSPACE.com/NASA

 

"NASA has selected Space Exploration Technologies, better known as SpaceX, to lease a historic launch pad for the company's commercial rockets.

 

The space agency announced Friday (Dec. 13) that it is beginning negotiations with SpaceX of Hawthorne, Calif., to take over exclusive use of Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. NASA used the pad for decades to send astronauts to the moon and later launch space shuttles into Earth orbit.

 

"Permitting the use and operation of this valuable national asset by a private-sector, commercial space partner will ensure its continued viability and allow for its continued use in support of U.S. space activities," NASA said in its statement announcing the selection. [Photos: The Rockets and Spaceships of SpaceX]

 

SpaceX, led by billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk, was one of two private spaceflight companies vying for the use of Launch Pad 39A. Blue Origin, founded by Amazon.com chief Jeff Bezos, had proposed using the launch complex as a multi-user facility supporting other rocket companies, including United Launch Alliance (ULA).

 

SpaceX proposed to use to use Pad 39A for its own future launches. The company is currently contracted by NASA to launch its unmanned Dragon capsules to resupply the International Space Station and is currently vying for the agency's business to fly astronauts to and from the space station beginning in 2017.

 

SpaceX has previously said it was considering use of Pad 39A for launching larger models of its Falcon rocket.

 

NASA chose SpaceX after the Government Accountability Office (GAO) denied a protest filed against the agency by Blue Origin in September. Blue Origin had raised concerns about the competitive process NASA was employing in its attempt to lease use of Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A).

snip

http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2013/1216/NASA-to-grant-SpaceX-lease-to-historic-launch-pad

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SpaceX Dragon Spacecraft Chasing Space Station for Easter Morning Rendezvous

Mike Wall

April 19, 2014

 

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SpaceX's third Dragon space capsule mission launched to the International Space Station from Cape Canaveral on April 18, 2014. Dragon capsule has been released and floats away from the Falcon 9 launch vehicle.
Credit: NASA TV

 

 

"A commercial cargo vessel is chasing down the International Space Station, setting up a rendezvous with the orbiting lab early on Easter Sunday (April 20).

 

SpaceX's unmanned Dragon spacecraft launched into space Friday afternoon (April 18) from Florida's Cape Canaveral Air Forceicon1.png Station, riding a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket to orbit in a smooth liftoff. Dragon is due to be grappled by the space station's huge robotic arm at 7:14 a.m. EDT (1114 GMT) Sunday, then berthed to the orbiting complex a little over two hours later.

 

You can watch Dragon's capture and berthing live here on Space.com beginning at 5:45 a.m. EDT (0945 GMT) Sunday, courtesy of NASA TV.

 

Dragon has embarked upon the third of 12 resupply missions SpaceX will fly to the space station under a $1.6 billion deal with NASA. The capsule is carrying nearly 5,000 lbs. (2,268 kilograms) of food, supplies, and scientific experiments, which crewmembers of the orbiting lab's Expedition 39 will offload when the hatch between the two vehicles opens on Sunday morning.

 

It's unclear if Dragon is toting chocolate eggs, jelly beans or any other special Easter treats for the astronauts.

 

 

"I don't know of anything," Bill Gerstenmaier, NASA associate administrator for human exploration and operations, told reporters after the launch Friday. "It'll be a surprise for all of us when they open the hatch."

snip

https://news.yahoo.com/spacex-dragon-spacecraft-chasing-space-station-easter-morning-104852535.html

 

 

IF YOU READING THIS POST
 
post-2-0-99536600-1397978605.jpg
post-2-0-32475700-1397978631.jpg
post-2-0-85284000-1397978662.jpg
 
THEN
 
CONGRATULATIONS!
 
YOU FOUND THE HIDDEN CHANI EASTER EGGS
 
INSTRUCTIONS: JUST POST "8726" IN THE SHOUTBOX AND LETS SEE IF OTHERS CAN FIGURE OUT WHATS GOING ON. (DONT TELL IN THE SHOUTBOX WHERE YOU FOUND  THIS POST  OR WHY YOU ARE POSTING "8726"
HAVE FUN!
 
OPERATION EASTER CONFUSION IS NOW IN PROGRESS LOL
:)
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I have a lot of friends down in the Cape Canaveral area that were let go, due to budget cuts. Hadn't seen the first post here. Hope that those friends were able to get employment through SpaceX.

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