Inflatable spacecraft launches from Russia

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Inflatable spacecraft launches from Russia

... Quote:
An experimental inflatable spacecraft bankrolled by real estate magnate Robert Bigelow rocketed into orbit Wednesday to test technology that could be used to fulfill his dream of building a commercial space station.

The Genesis I satellite flew aboard a converted Cold War ballistic missile from Russia's southern Ural Mountains at 6:53 p.m. Moscow time. It was boosted about 320 miles above Earth minutes after launch, according to the Russian Strategic Missile Forces.

The launch was a first for the startup Bigelow Aerospace, founded by Bigelow, who owns the Budget Suites of America hotel chain. Bigelow is among several entrepreneurs attempting to break into the fledging manned commercial spaceflight business.

Despite the successful launch, significant hurdles remain.

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Space stations may be inflatable. Russia's Robert Bigelow launches an inflatable spacecraft and plans for future space stations.

inflatablespacestation.jpg - 24.1kb
By YCON: posted on 13-7-2006

Hey this is really funny I don't think i would like to fly with them soon.

From http://www.bigelowaerospace...

Here we are, launching a spaceship and the video camera gets knocked over so mission control can't see the rocket!!

... Quote:
With personnel in Nevada already sitting on pins and needles of nervousness, excited personnel in Russia tipped over the camera beaming back images to Las Vegas. They never tipped it back up.

"What we were seeing in mission control was watching the audience say, 'Look, I see it!'" said Haakonstad. "It was so exuberant that there was no way for us to get a voice in and say, 'Hey, fix the camera.'"

If that wasn't bad they have a power cut, so run an extention lead from a restaraunt over the road. can you imagine the conversation asking the owner if they could run a lead over the road because they were launching a spaceship :)

... Quote:
Now, there was a little more than 30 minutes before SpaceQuest controllers were supposed to hear a cry of life from the Genesis I, but there was no life in the receivers in Virginia.

SpaceQuest engineers were in a bind. They had 30 minutes to find a way to get power and receive first contact from the Genesis I. As SpaceQuest engineers scrambled for a solution, one noticed that there was light in a restaurant across the street, which still miraculously had power. Desperate for power, they got all the extension cords they could find and went across the street to ask for help.

The restaurant owner agreed to help and SpaceQuest had power.

"They ran the cords across the road to get power from the restaurant," Bigelow said. "Cars were driving across the cord as it powered their computers and receivers."
By netchicken: posted on 19-7-2006

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