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Old May 5th, 2018 #1
Nikola Bijeliti
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Default Launch of Mars Insight Lander

Today I attended the launch of the Mars Insight Lander and took the following video:


The launch took place on the fifty-seventh anniversary of Alan Shepard's flight in Freedom 7, the first flight of an American into space.


Since today is also Cinco de Mayo, let us also not forget the most famous Mexican Astronaut of all, Josť Imenez.

 
Old May 5th, 2018 #2
Ray Allan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikola Bijeliti View Post
Today I attended the launch of the Mars Insight Lander and took the following video:

Launch of Mars Insight Lander

The launch took place on the fifty-seventh anniversary of Alan Shepard's flight in Freedom 7, the first flight of an American into space.

Let's Light This Candle

Since today is also Cinco de Mayo, let us also not forget the most famous Mexican Astronaut of all, Josť Imenez.

The Astronaut by Jose Jimenez 1961
Sorry you couldn't see the launch through the fog very well, Nikola. Still must have been cool to watch. Mars InSight is the first planetary probe launch from VAFB. I think the Clementine lunar mission was launched from there in 1994. I wasn't sure how they could get a good Mars transfer burn launching from VAFB, being it's a high-inclination and polar orbit launch site, but obviously they worked it out.

I hope I can see humans go to Mars during my lifetime, whether it's Russians, Chinese or SpaceX. We'll see if today's ape-firmative action NASA will do it.

Here's a good video of the launch from JPL-NASA:

That scene from The Right Stuff where Al Shepard pees in his suit is funny. The miniseries From the Earth to the Moon did a good dramatization, too.

I think Bill Dana, aka Jose Jimenez, died recently.

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Old May 5th, 2018 #3
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I wasn't sure how they could get a good Mars transfer burn launching from VAFB, being it's a high-inclination and polar orbit launch site, but obviously they worked it out.
According to the announcer at the viewing location, it was launched southward into a polar orbit, then, after a little over 3/4 of an orbit, completes a trans-Mars injection over the North Pole.
 
Old May 7th, 2018 #4
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Here's a video that explains why they launched from California.

 
Old May 8th, 2018 #5
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Looking forward to a successful landing of InSight in November. Sadly, the "Great Galactic Ghoul" lurking near Mars claimed the last lander, the Exo-Mars 'Schiaparelli' in 2016.
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Old May 18th, 2018 #6
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Old 3 Weeks Ago #7
Nikola Bijeliti
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Sorry you couldn't see the launch through the fog very well, Nikola. Still must have been cool to watch.
Okay, I took another launch video this morning, and this time I could actually see the launch very clearly. Well, in person, anyway. My Nikon Coolpix camera wasn't able to capture all the detail that the eye could, but you can still see a blob, which is the jet from the rocket.


If you have the time, check out the playlist on my channel of videos related to the Mars Insight Lander.
 
Old 3 Weeks Ago #8
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Originally Posted by Nikola Bijeliti View Post
Okay, I took another launch video this morning, and this time I could actually see the launch very clearly. Well, in person, anyway. My Nikon Coolpix camera wasn't able to capture all the detail that the eye could, but you can still see a blob, which is the jet from the rocket.

SpaceX Launch of Iridium NEXT Satellites 56-65

If you have the time, check out the playlist on my channel of videos related to the Mars Insight Lander.
Were you able to see first stage separation and boost-back?
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Old 3 Weeks Ago #9
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Were you able to see first stage separation and boost-back?
All we could see was the jet from the rocket engine, no more. There was fog on the ground, but after the rocket got above the fog, we could see a white line in the sky rise up and over us until it disappeared over the roof of the motel balcony. I suppose you could describe it as a very bright comet. It was clearer and sharper than the video would indicate, but it was much less spectacular that I was lead to believe that a launch would be. The sound of the rocket is rather loud, louder than it appears on the video, and the earth does shake a bit; that part is more spectacular than the sight itself.

When we took the guided tour of the Vandenberg launch complex, the tour guide told us of a place called the Hawks Nest that has a better view, but he said that it is only open for daytime launches. I thought it was a building, like Hitler's Eagle's Nest, but, when I googled it, it was only a lot by the side of the road. He also said that there is usually no fog at winter launches. We may go again if I have the time.
 
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