SpaceX Releases Landing Video, Elon Musk Announces Reveal of Dragon 2.0

As promised, SpaceX has posted a video of the recent Falcon 9 first stage soft landing attempt which took place on April 18.  As promised, it is rather garbled to say the least. And this is the improved footage, which SpaceX still hopes will be further cleaned up in a crowd sourced effort.

Also forthcoming, an announcement regarding the long awaited unveiling of the crew carrying spacecraft which will ride to orbit atop the Falcon 9, the Dragon 2.0.

The timing was apparently prompted by Russian space minister Dmitry Rogozin who according to reports, indirectly threatened the status of astronaut access to ISS while complaining about US sanctions which have personally targeted him, suggesting that NASA would need a trampoline to get to the station.

In a strange version of a renewed Cold War being waged through tweets, Elon Musk countered with this:

With NASA Administrator Charles Bolden having stated that the agency has some flexibility within the Commercial Crew program to prioritize getting one provider on-line as soon as possible, even in a two provider scenario, the SpaceX Dragon reveal is an important development.  Presuming a successful pad abort demonstration later this year, followed by an in-flight abort demonstration soon after, the U.S. could be looking at a fully demonstrated capacity to launch its own astronauts within surprisingly short order, even if an actual first launch is a bit longer in coming.

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