Big deal you say.
Actually, it is. Or was made to be by the corporate media.
You see, this launch figures hugely in the Obamanator’s new NASA policy of using private contractors to launch cargo and crews to the International Space Station after the Space Shuttle retires at the end of the year.
Unfortunately, SpaceX and its owner Elon Musk, have become the poster children for this plan and for better or worse, earned the ire of certain Congress-critters from the “space states”; Alabama, Texas, Louisiana and Florida.
Unfair or not, this is the microscope SpaceX finds itself under and the Falcon9 rocket, test flight or not.
If the flight is successful, Mr. Obama gets more ammunition to push his new plan through. If it isn’t, the row will definitely be harder to hoe and the zombie Constellation Program will probably waste more billions through to the end of the fiscal year.
Either way, I wish SpaceX the best of luck and good winds.
The space program and the industry in general needs for them to be successful.
SpaceX will have a webcast of the launch starting at 10:40 a.m., 20 minutes before the launch window opens.