About the Author

Derek Wise

Content Manager and Videographer for Space Explored

Interested in space for many years, Derek recently moved to Florida and has been producing rocket launch videos ever since.

Derek recently joined the Space Explored team and has expanded in to writing, covering space related events form around the world.

 

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April 12

At 10:16 pm Eastern Time, a Meteor lit up the sky over Florida. The meteors large streak was spotted by people across central and south Florida.

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Firefly Aerospace is nearing its inaugural flight. Firefly’s first Alpha rocket, which arrived at Vandenberg in November, is now vertical on the launch in preparation for a static fire and launch.

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[Update Below] On April 10th, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory shared in a Status Update that the first flight of Mars Helicopter Ingenuity has been rescheduled to No Earlier Than April 14th. Ingenuity underwent a low-speed spin test of its rotor yesterday, reaching 50rpm. When the helicopter moved to begin the full-speed spin test of its rotors the watchdog timer expired.

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April 9

We have been following the deployment of Ingenuity since it first landed on Mars, on the belly of Perseverance, back in February. NASA has been working towards the first flight of Ingenuity, which is scheduled to occur late on April 11th.

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April 8

The Mars Helicopter Ingenuity is an exciting new development in planetary exploration. The ability to have powered, controlled flights on another planet opens up new possibilities for future robotic and, eventually, human missions. Years of work have led up to Ingenuitity’s first flight, no earlier than April 11th, and the teams at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) are currently working through the helicopter’s 10-day long deployment process.

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April 7

[Gallery] SpaceX launches 24th Starlink mission

On April 7th, at 12:34pm ET, SpaceX launched 60 Starlink Satellites on top of a Falcon 9 rocket which lifted off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.

March 30

During Inspiration 4’s “Meet the Crew” event earlier today, we were properly introduced to each of the four individuals who will be representing the best qualities of humanity as they fly to orbit as soon as September of this year.

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March 26

Early last night, those in the Pacific North West were treated to a shocking display of lights across the sky. At about 9pm PT (12am ET) the Falcon 9 second stage from March 4th’s Starlink mission reentered in a fiery cascade of lights.

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March 24

The New York start-up Launcher is unlike most other rocket companies. With a small team of 8 people, Launcher is working to create the highest performance rocket for small sat launches.

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HoppAR was developed by Josef Grunig, a freelance developer and passionate space fan. The app was his passion project during quarantine and a gift to all fans of space exploration. Free to download on both iOS and Android, this is as close as you can get to viewing a launch in person without actually being there — you can also get far closer than you ever could to a real thing.

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March 23

Today, during a press briefing on the first flight of Mars Helicopter Ingenuity, new information was revealed for the upcoming flight of Ingenuity. This first flight is currently targeting April 8th. When Perseverance first touched down, they determined that it landed right on the edge of an acceptable flight zone for Ingenuity.

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March 22

Rocket Lab is preparing for the 19th Mission of their Electron later today, at 6:30 pm Eastern time. This rideshare launch, “They Go Up So Fast”, will deliver 7 satellites into orbit for customers including BlackSky, the University of New South Wales, and the US Army’s Space and Missile Defense command.

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Ingenuity on the Belly of Perseverance. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
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Yesterday, NASA’s Perseverance rover released the debris shield which protected the Mars Helicopter, Ingenuity. This marks the beginning of the deployment for Ingenuity; which is expected to take 10 Martian days (sols). The next major step in the process will be Perseverance driving to the center of the helipad which has been selected.

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March 21

This is a commonly asked question about SpaceX Booster Recovery. Why would SpaceX waste fuel igniting the engines and trying to land vertically rather than using parachutes like the Space Shuttle SRB’s did? There are a number of reasons a propulsively landing system is ideal, but they all tie back to SpaceX’s goal of rapid reusability.

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Elon Musk wants Mars Base Alpha within the decade

Today Elon Musk restated the goal of having an active city on Mars within the decade. Development of SpaceX’s Mars rocket, Starship, is underway in Boca Chica, Texas.

March 19

NASA’s first hot fire test of the Artemis I booster took place on January 16th. This first test exceeded NASA’s preset hydraulic limits when gimbaling the motors. Exceeding these conservative limits during flight would not have caused malfunctions, nonetheless, NASA decide to conduct a second test to gather more data.

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March 18

First photographed by Lab Propulsion Systems, and confirmed by Gavin Cornwell, a third Octograbber was seen in production at SpaceX’s Cidco Rd facility. This is a sign that SpaceX may be closer than expected to having a third operational droneship. This droneship will be called “A Shortfall of Gravitas” in reference to the Culture series of science fiction books by Iain Banks.

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Artist's concept of Ingenuity in flight. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
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NASA’s Perseverance Rover landed on February 18th and recently began to move. Mounted on the belly of the rover is Ingenuity, a small, 1.8 KG helicopter. Ingenuity will attempt the first powered and controlled flight on another planet no earlier than the first week of April.

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