For the fifth time in just over a week, SpaceX is trying to launch its Falcon 9 Rocket. Am I stuck in a timeloop? Is any of this real? Am I here? Are you?
SpaceX attributed the first four scrubbed launches to problems with their liquid oxygen system, heavy winds, and a boat straying too close to the launch zone. Alternately, we both died thousands of years ago and in this—our purgatory—we relive the same day over and over again. Having long ago been forgotten by an indifferent God above, we remain trapped here together forever in our time prison doomed to repeat, but never able to change, our interminable present.
In this, their fifth attempt, SpaceX will attempt to launch a communications satellite into the dark void above (in which we, too, drift alone) and then land itself on an ocean barge. No other rocket has ever successfully made an ocean-landing before. All predictions (even SpaceX’s) suggest that a crash would be the most likely result of the new experimental orbit that’s being tested, if we still believed in reality—which I don’t.
You can watch the launch (or not?) right here at 6:35pm EST. If time wasn’t an illusion designed merely to fool us into a temporary sense of being, I would remind you that the livefeed kicks off 20 minutes before that.
Update 6:45 p.m. (EST): And the launch took place right on-schedule and everything is looking good. Here are a few early shots from the launch—we’ll keep adding pictures as they come in:
Update 7:10 p.m. EST: The SES-9 communications satellite was just successfully released. No confirmation yet, though, on whether it managed that ocean barge landing. We’ve reached out to SpaceX to find out what happened.
Update 7:50 p.m. EST: Per Elon Musk, the Falcon 9 came close, but didn’t quite stick that ocean barge landing this time. Musk said on Twitter, “Rocket landed hard on the droneship. Didn’t expect this one to work (v hot reentry), but next flight has a good chance.”