SpaceX hired a Louisiana company to build a drone ship
SpaceX is a company that designs, manufactures and launches advanced rockets and spacecraft. They work with NASA and various corporations to send supplies, satellites and at some point humans into space.
I was watching a video from the MIT AeroAstro Centennial Symposium where SpaceX’s CEO, Elon Musk, mentioned they’re building a barge in Louisiana that will serve as a water-based landing platform for their reusable rockets.
He confirmed this a month later in an intial tweet followed up by another with details:
Autonomous spaceport drone ship. Thrusters repurposed from deep sea oil rigs hold position within 3m even in a storm. pic.twitter.com/wJFOnGdt9w— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 22, 2014
Base is 300 ft by 100 ft, with wings that extend width to 170 ft. Will allow refuel & rocket flyback in future.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 22, 2014
When I heard that I was super excited because a) I’m a big fan of SpaceX and b) they built something where I live.
New Orleans has been doing space since 1961
Louisana doesn’t get as much space love as it should when compared to our neighbors Texas and Mississippi. New Orleans is home to the Michoud Assembly Facility which is a NASA-operated complex which built Saturn V rockets during the 60s and then all of the external fuel tanks for the space shuttles. Michoud now works on the Space Launch System (SLS) which is NASA’s successor to the space shuttle. Michoud is responsible for the core stage and construction has began recently.
It makes senses that SpaceX would contract a Louisiana company to construct their barge because we have a solid background in ship building. I would love to see a larger presence from the space industry, public or private, here in Louisiana.