WASHINGTON - NASA and SpaceX chiefs shook their heads with disbelief and joy Wednesday after a perfect launch into orbit and back of the company's Dragon capsule, a historic first for the future of space travel.I slammed the Air Force on ARES Blog recently (hey, posters were coming after the Marines so I struck back in an appropriate manner) but truth be told...THANK GOD FOR THE BOYS IN BLUE!
Never before has a private enterprise attempted to launch its own spacecraft to orbit the Earth and splash back down intact, and SpaceX pulled off the operation perfectly, NASA and company officials said.
The demonstration launch invigorated the US space agency and boosted confidence in the prospect of using commercial vendors to carry astronauts into space and to supply the International Space Station.
"I am sort of in semi-shock. I wish I could be more articulate at moments like this," said SpaceX founder Elon Musk.
"It blows my mind. It is hard to be articulate with a blown mind," Musk told a NASA press conference.
"This has really been better than I expected," he added. "If there had been people sitting in the Dragon capsule today, they would have had a very nice ride."
The Dragon spacecraft blasted off from Cape Canaveral, Florida atop the massive Falcon 9 rocket at 1543 GMT.
The idea that our future in space will be in the hands of a private corporation instead of a dedicated US government agency is....stunning. I wonder what Niel Armstrong would say about this? Anyway --- good job Space X --- you resurrected the Large Apollo Concept to perfection ---- NASA ---- you suck ---- how about a little less Muslim outreach and a lot more space exploration ---- and the administration ---- get a clue guys ---- China is going to beat us to the high ground unless you get it in gear.
Read about SPACE X here...