Misc Space Related

Moving to a New Place and the Art of Rocketry 

So for the past two months my housemates and I have been working on moving to a new place. One of our friends has finished his PhD and is moving out/on to new adventures, and so we cannot afford the awesome 4 bedroom house we have lived in for the past two years.

Being engineers, with all of us working on our PhD’s, from the get go everything was about optimization; how to minimize time spent driving around to see new places by downloading apps and using online resources to search for a place, finding the best location within a 5 mile radius from campus, and of course optimizing number of trips to move our things after we found a place.

Two days ago we signed the lease and went about working out the best, most time and cost efficient ways to move our stuff; from packing everything, renting a truck and the driving schedule, to who gets which room. And I can tell you we spent a significant amount of time on “designing” everything so that we can:

  1. Move everything over the weekend
  2. Return the rental truck on time

The result is that we still have kitchen things to be packed, and we were about 45 minutes late on returning the truck.

So why am I telling you this in a very strangely titled post? Because today the SpaceX Falcon9 rocket carrying supplies to the ISS using the dragon capsule exploded in flight, and the entire cargo was lost. A very expensive and consuming loss. The reactions online were mixed, some thought it was a step towards commercial space, others had opinions not so great about SpaceX and what they are doing.

My point here is that given 4 engineers, one of which with a PhD and three others working on theirs, the somewhat simple task of moving was not perfectly executed. How difficult do you think putting a rocket into orbit is?

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