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Just now, cubinator said:

Oh my god, STAGE 1 SACRIFICED ITSELF FOR THE BIRDS

I was just thinking that the birds better get out of the way before it gets too toasty but there was no reason for my concern 

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2 minutes ago, munlander1 said:

I was just thinking that the birds better get out of the way before it gets too toasty but there was no reason for my concern 

I was fully expecting to see seabird roast in a few seconds there. 

Looked like the landing burn started, you could see it in the clouds. I wonder if the engine aborted or if it exploded in flight.

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1 minute ago, cubinator said:

I was fully expecting to see seabird roast in a few seconds there. 

Looked like the landing burn started, you could see it in the clouds. I wonder if the engine aborted or if it exploded in flight.

Did anyone catch the “stage 1 FTS has safed” call?

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1 minute ago, CatastrophicFailure said:

Did anyone catch the “stage 1 FTS has safed” call?

Yeah, I heard it as usual.

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24 minutes ago, cubinator said:

Oh my god, STAGE 1 SACRIFICED ITSELF FOR THE BIRDS

My thoughts exactly! I thought something looked off during the end of the entry burn (flame only to one side), but my mind was taken off of that by the drone ship camera with the birds. A net loss for SpaceX with that, but definitely a net win for those birds.

EDIT: Also, I’m surprised they said they lost the booster on stream, even though it was blindingly obvious from the camera views. I remember them bluffing about the center core on the FH test flight for a bit, then just dropping the subject. I guess media pressure was higher that time, though.

Edited by RyanRising
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Eh, I'm sure the birds would have been (safely) blown out of the way if Stage 1 had landed norminally.  As always, it'd be interesting to find out what went wrong.

It's odd  awesome when *not* recovering the booster is the anomaly!

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5 minutes ago, zolotiyeruki said:

(safely)

blown away by the hot end of a giant rocket booster. I'm pretty sure they'd be killed by the sound alone and they were way too late to start flapping away from a rocket stage dropping out of the sky. I'm sure they're well prepared for regular falcons, but this Falcon is entirely different.

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Just now, CatastrophicFailure said:

Did anyone catch the “stage 1 FTS has safed” call?

Yeah, they did safe the FTS.

Just now, Brotoro said:

Good orbit.

I wonder if the Starlink satellites have enough delta-V to make good orbits in the case of a second burn failure of the Mvac.

IDK if they have the thrust, I think the dV would be pretty trivial

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Spoiler

1.
The Ancient Romans first asked birds for prophecy. 
Space-X didn't. 
See the result. 

(While birds were there and waiting.)

2.
My last week post appeared to be prophetic. Partially.

Spoiler

MV5BZmUzZGFiYTYtY2I3Ny00MGJmLTlmZTItNTNh

Not the flipper (SN), but a Falcon.
Anyway, it works.
Also, SN is still going to fly. Let's wait a little.

Upd.
Got it.
Falcon has intercepted the magic, by unexpectedly flying first.

 

Edited by kerbiloid
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Watch at 26:49 (can’t embed at a timestamp b/c I’m on mobile ATM) for the call for entry burn shutdown, and visually the shutdown. Beginning immediately after that and lasting until the video and S1 telemetry cuts out 13 seconds later, there is a very large plume of sparks and something blue-ish  originating from the bottom of the right side of the booster. Plasma I would suspect, which indicates either:

The trajectory was too much for the booster to handle (extremely doubtful because the booster lands in the vicinity of OCISLY, and MECO seemed to occur on time)

Entry burn somehow was not enough. I will have to go back and compare the Stage 1 telemetry with past Starlink launches, but because the callout was on time and the vehicle didn’t flip out due to asymmetric thrust I will assume the entry burn was mostly nominal.

The booster came in at too high of an angle of attack. This is more convincing to me than the other possibilities, but it doesn’t account for how close the booster landing to OCISLY (we saw the light of either the Merlins or somehow an explosion in frame, and those lucky seagulls heard something and flapped about), especially when a large deviation at those altitudes and speeds would bring the booster farther away from the droneship than I imagine grid fins could bring it back from.

Finally, my favorite explanation, that is a hardware problem with a Merlin. It needn’t be one of the landing burn engines, but if any of the engines somehow had an issue that would result in it breaking apart due to thermal and aerodynamic stresses, that would explain it. It explains to proximity to the ASDS, the apparently nominal ascent and entry burns, and the streak of plasma up the side of the booster that surely would cause a loss of signal. The only problem is why an engine would fail like that- B1059 has proven itself- would be an unpublicized engine swap, damage during refurbishment, or something during NROL-108.

Anyway, just my two cents. Elon remains silent about the cause or any more details. We mourn the loss of B1059 and celebrate the survival of several seagulls.

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