After three failed attempts, one scattering of Scotty's ashes over the Pacific Ocean, and a few mid-air explosions, the SpaceX Falcon 1 rocket has finally reached orbit. The achievement marks a major milestone for Elon Musk, whose visions of a privately-funded rocket program appeared just out of reach until today's success.At the SpaceX web site, the feat was documented in a kind of flipbook format, with a series of photos showing the rocket launch from an on-board camera from launch to orbit. "Fourth time's a charm," Musk said in a statement. No kidding, but congratulations on this 100% private effort nonetheless. Noted Slashdot contributor dbullard, "This was a completely new vehicle - it's not using any previously developed hardware. All developed from scratch. No government supplied hardware, Russian engines, or old ICBM motors. My hat's off to the employees of Space X - all 550 of them. (Note - no 'cast of thousands,' just 550)." The next Falcon 1 launch will carry RazakSat into orbit for Malaysia. If that launch is successful, the larger Falcon 9 rocket will take flight for the first time sometime in Q2 2009. [SpaceX via Slashdot]
Pwnage - you're damn skippy.
I only wish i had the chops and the balls to go work for a company like that. This is a great great day. This is on par with reaching America, first flight, supersonic, flight around the world, and definitely with my hero, Burt Rutan, and Spaceship One, Government ZERO!
And its things like this that make me wish the government would just go away and leave me alone!