Intuitive Machines to start its attempt for lunar landing

This week SpaceX is here with three launches, the biggest of the three being on Wednesday. Oh wait, all of SpaceX’s launches this week will be on Wednesday, fun day.

This week’s launch:

  • February 14 (Wednesday)
    • SpaceX | Falcon 9 | IM-1 | 12:57 A.M. ET
      • LC-39A, Kennedy Space Center, FL
    • SpaceX | Falcon 9 | USSF-124 | 2:30 P.M. PT
      • SLC-40, Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, FL
    • SpaceX | Falcon 9 | Starlink Group 7-14 | 4:55 P.M. ET
      • SLC-4W, Vandenberg Space Force Base, CA
    • Rocsomos | Soyuz 2.1a | Progress MS-26 | 10:25 P.M. ET
      • LA-Y2, Tanegashima Space Center, Japan
  • February 17 (Saturday)
    • ISRO | GSLV Mk II | INSAT-3DS | 7:00 A.M. ET
      • Second Launch Pad, Satish Dhawan Space Centre, India
  • February 19 (Sunday)
    • Rocket Lab | Electron | On Closer Inspection | TBD
      • Māhia Peninsula, New Zealand

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SpaceX to launch the next lunar landing attempt

If you love rockets, then this Valentines Day will be full of excitement as SpaceX plans to launch a Falcon 9 from all three of its launch pads across the country. Most importantly, one of the missions will feature the next lunar lander that will attempt what has so far been the hardest challenge since landing on the Moon, landing on the Moon.

Intuitive Machines first lunar lander will liftoff from LC-39A, the same launch site that flew Apollo missions to the Moon some 50 years ago. Similar to Astrobotic‘s ill-fated mission that launched last month, IM-1 will be for NASA’s CLPS program, part of Artemis.

No commercial company has yet to successfully land on the Moon so once again we will have to watch carefully to see if this will be the company to do it. Intuitive Machines has stated they have looked carefully at previous failed landings to ensure they learn from those lessons as well so they don’t suffer a similar fate. However, nothing prepares a lander more than an actual landing attempt, something we will see later this month.

Following that early morning launch will be a mission for the US Space Force a few miles south at SLC-40 then a Starlink mission on the other coast at Vandenberg. Meanwhile, smack dab in the middle at Starbase, a fully stacked Starship rocket awaits its launch license from the FAA.

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