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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

CRS-10 Launch date is approaching!

Hi Students! I am with hopes that you read the information provided on the last blog post and you have a basic foundation on the upcoming CRS-10 Launch. In just the past week, there has been so much new information regarding this launch so I wanted to share it with you.

A few days ago the Falcon9 rocket was launched onto LaunchPad 39A.  After the roll out it conducted a static test firing. It is tested while still strapped down to the launch pad. This is the first time there were flames burning on that historic site for several years!

Here is an article about the static test: Static Test article

Now reading about the test is cool, but watching it is much cooler! Check out the video below:

As if I wasn't already excited about the launch, I learned that SpaceX will once again land their rocket! (Not the entire rocket, just one stage of it!) (You may want to zoom in on the image below.) SpaceX has successfully recovered 5 rockets thus far, so this launch could make for number six!

If that image alone doesn't show you what an amazing feat it is to land a rocket, check out the video of the first landing by National Geographic: 

Besides the amazing aspects of the launch, it's important to understand the mission of the launch. We learned that it is delivering cargo to the ISS.  However, that is not all! Watch the NASA video to learn about SAGEIII:

Besides the video, you can learn more about SAGEIII from the NASA website here: SAGEIII

Finally, some of you may remember that this launch was supposed to happen already. Here is an article that explains why the date changed: Date Change article

This blog post provided you with a variety of different information related to CRS-10. You learned about the date change, the launch and landing, and the SAGEIII mission.  With all those different components, it's easy to understand how thousands of individuals are involved in any one mission and how countless things can be learned from this mission.

When I attend the SMAP Launch in January of 2015, we met (now former) Director of NASA, Charlie Bolden. (Feel free to see that blog post with the related video and information.) One of the most important things I took away from meeting him was how he explained that NASA missions are not just to learn more about outer space, but to learn more about planet Earth. Think of all the things we will learn about Earth, about human progress, and ways to make things better for us on this planet just from this mission. Go through the sources on this post to think of something we can learn from this mission that will effect life on Earth, not just about how it will help people on the ISS.  I hope every student can identify something different, and will refer to the sources as they do so. Also, feel free to ask more questions along with your observation. I'm hoping we can answer as many questions as possible while there!

Monday, February 6, 2017

The Launch of SpaceX CRS-10

The Launch of SpaceX CRS-10

What is it?

SpX-10 / SpaceX CRS-10 is a cargo resuplly mission that will go to the ISS on February 14, 2017. What a sweet Valentine's Day it will be!

NASA awarded a contract to SpaceX for 12 missions, and this is one of them. This mission was supposed to happen this past November. However, there was an explosion on the launch pad on September 1st, and this mission was pushed back as a result.  

This mission will launch from Kennedy Space Center's launch pad 39A. This is a historic launch pad that was created for the Apollo missions, and then modified for the shuttle program.  Nothing has launched there since the last flight of the Space Shuttle program on July 8, 2011. 

Although this is a SpaceX launch, NASA determines the basics of this launch (what the payload is, the date and time of the launch, etc.) This launch will cary over 4,000 pounds of cargo. The rocket will be a Falcon 9 and the spacecraft it carries will be a Dragon C12. 

To learn more about SpaceX's Falcon9 rocket, view their website here: Falcon9
To learn more about SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft, view their website  here: Dragon

Since this mission is bringing cargo to the ISS, it is important to know about the International Space Station. Go on NASA's website here, and note things such as who is on it, what countries are participating on it, how long it has been in orbit, etc. It is also really fun to note when it is passing overhead!

Mr. Quaglio also shared with me an awesome video that is a tour of the ISS. I highly suggest watching it! Please click on the video above and find out just where this cargo is going and why it is important that it gets there. 

Now here is something that might be the most amazing of all...
Students from our school have made things that will be launched on this mission! Yes, you read that right. (Maybe this is something that you can do your senior year!) Please read about this mission's connection to our school here: Students Build Parts For NASA

If you were in class or read the blog about our classes asking questions about the John Webb Space Telescope, you remember that we connected that mission to the scientific revolution. In previous missions (you can read older blogs), we connected them to what we study about exploration and even imperialism.

Blog Update!!

Check out this article, SpaceX could be launching a rocket here every 2-3 weeks! (Seriously, you should read it). Read Me. Now.

Okay, we resume to the original blog post. 

My question to you is, how does CRS-10 relate to what we learn about in World History? Can you connect it to anything we learned about yet? (Think: Renaissance, Reformation, Exploration, Enlightenment, Revolution, etc.) If you want to read on on what we will learn about, we will also cover the Industrial Revolution, Imperialism ,the World at War, and the Cold War. If you are having trouble thinking of connections, think of what this mission encompasses (delivering cargo, an international crew on the ISS, SpaceX being a private business, etc.) If you still can't think of a connection, consider what you are covering in your other classes. Can this connect to what you are learning about in Spanish? Biology? Mathematics? Physical Education? Perhaps it even relates to what you are learning about in your academy (for example, culinary and health care students, do you think there are medical supplies or food products included on this cargo?)

Your Task

Since I will be able to ask questions of many people, including the scientists and engineers related to this mission, wouldn't it be great if I could ask them one of your questions? Your response should be a paragraph and should reflect your understanding of how this mission connects to what we learn abut in world history or any of your other classes. Your response should reflect that you reviewed the material (websites, video, articles, etc) that is provided on this post. Lastly, come up with a question that I could ask while attending the press briefing before the launch. (It will be live on NASA TV and I'm sure you'd love to hear your name and question!) Make sure that your question is unique and not one that another student suggested. (So the earlier you response, the better!) 

I'm so excited about this mission and the ways that you can be involved with it! It's going to be a fascinating week!