Monday, April 21, 2014

First Stage of CRS-3's F9 recovered! (Updated, as it laregly wasn't)

EDIT to update: 
Per Elon Musk's presser, the first stage of the F9 achieved a soft landing, but was largely destroyed by heavy seas soon after. They recovered a few parts, that's all.

My conclusion below, based upon the maritime hazard report I found, was wrong. I said they got it, but they largely did not. The last sentence of the original post, plus the title, are wrong.

What I should have done is stuck to the maritime hazard warning. No other space site or news site had that, I found it myself. That was actual breaking news. My extrapolation of what it meant wasn't, it was just a hopeful guess.
I'm very knew to this whole blogging thing (My sincere thanks to Ken for allowing me to post here) so I'm learning. 

I'm leaving the original post below for posterity. 


They've found the first stage of CRX-3's F9;

This is from the National Geospacial Inteligence Agency's April 21st maritime hazards warnings;

NAVAREA IV 274/14 [1 of 1][[WWNWSFOLDER]]

2. CANCEL THIS MSG 220720Z APR 14.//

Authority: RCC MIAMI 190256Z APR 14.

Cancel: 22072000 Apr 14

Note the cancel; the second iteration is a typo by the National Geospacial Intelligence Agency (not me for once!). The first iteration is correct; 220720Z

What it means is April 22nd, 07:20 GMT (Zulu). That's just under two hours from now.

I can think of only one reason why they'd put that specific a cancel time in the NOTM;  the stage is about to not be at that location anymore.

THEY GOT IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


ken_anthony said...

Good report.

C J said...

I'm waiting to see if I was right. I feel pretty confident that the only reason they'd specify a cancel time like that (to the minute!)is if they'd been informed that the stage was being taken away. Or, I suppose intentionally sunk would fit...

But we'll know if I'm right or wrong within about 48 hours. If I'm wrong,I'll add an update: CJ has egg on his face. :)

But if I'm right... so far as I can see, Planet Plots had the news first.

C J said...

Minor update.

NSF used my NGIA maritime data in their latest article (I posted it there, but left my conclusions for here) and they also report that if it's to be taken ashore, the destination is Charleston.

Given the speed of the ship they are apparently using (Oxbow) and a guess of the speed carrying that booster, I'm extending my timeframe to 50 hours from Oxbow's departure from the touchdown site.
At the moment, it's still there. Here it is live on vesseltracker.

C J said...

It looks like I probably had the wrong ship, but, the maritime hazard report was real.

As for recovery... they managed to recover pieces of the Casiope mission booster off California (their first soft splashdown attempt, which didn't land intact.) so I don't see them ignoring a largely intact booster.

So, based on hunches plus a few rumors, I'm sticking by my claim that they got it. BUT... if that proves false, I'll post a mea culpa.

ken_anthony said...

Your welcome. You could become one of the greats.

The problem adults have that children don't is children are ok with mistakes. Adults begin to think they shouldn't happen.