Christ, was that manned?
So I'm an asshole, but is it so wrong to picture that photographer caught on mic receiving an old-timey movie "calm down slap"?
Holy Fuck!
NOT a NASA rocket - a Orbital Sciences Corporation rocket! NASA outsourced to them because PRIVATIZATION RULZ!1! just like it did in Iraq.
I showed that first vid to my father. He was a Range Safety Officer for the Air Force in the late 1950s, early 60s. Sat on many launches as they learned how to do this, and blew up well over 20 missiles that went bad. (Including a Titan and a Saturn, for those who know their big missiles.)

When I showed him this vid, he said -- I saw many launches like that. [Long pause] That was an expensive explosion.

He's almost 91 and explained to me in great detail how similar launches like this failed, back in the day.
Yeah right" maintain positions at your consule", and count how many trillions of dollars just got blown to bits.
@5: NASA has contracted out the construction of rockets for decades. Take the Saturn V and Apollo missions for example. The first stage was built by Boeing with Rocketdyne F-1 engines. The second stage was built by North American with Rocketdyne J-2 engines. The third stage was built by Douglas Aircraft with a Rocketdyne J-2 engine. The instrumentation unit was built by IBM. The command and service modules were built by North American. The Lunar Lander was built by Grumman. The launch escape system was built by Lockheed. Pad checkouts were handled with North American. Hundreds of other companies had various roles from hardware to services. The only real difference now is that one of those companies has a role in operations (and the entire contract falls under them).

@7: Probably around $200 million plus damages to the launch pad. Much of this will probably be covered by insurance.
@7: Also, the reason they maintain their positions at their consoles is so that they don't inadvertently talk to each other about what just happened. This isn't for nefarious reasons, it is just human nature to want to ask what the fuck just happened. But doing so and talking with people can change your memory and recollection of the events. For the accident investigation, they will want to hear only what each person independently saw or did and not to have that influenced by consensus or discussions. This is the rule in a lot of industries that work with high risk projects that had a mishap. What probably happened afterwards is that they each saved their data and were given a pad of paper to write down what they saw and did.
Well, it's not ISIS, but ISS, for starters. And @5 is right, it's a not a NASA rocket, but the third OSC launch, they're a private company that NASA contracts to.

While generally I'm against privatization of stuff like this I'm very for it with space launches. I don't believe NASA is wasteful, but it has far too much red tape in its way. I wish this launch had gone better, but then I'm also a big proponent of Space X, OSC's biggest competitor.
@3 - Maybe he didn't realize it was unmanned?
So the second video ends and YouTube populates the screen with four little snapshots of things I might want to watch next...upper left is Kristen Chenowith singing "My Philosophy" on the Tonys. ?????????????
They would get better equipment if they outsourced to Starfleet.
So do they have spare rockets/rocket launchers lying around ready to use? Because I think there are humans in the Space Station and they need food, and I bet this makes them pretty nervous.
From an interview with Elon Musk a couple of years ago (source:… ):

Musk: So, I thought, we should be able to make a much cheaper rocket given those materials costs. There must be some pretty silly things going on in the market. And there are!

Anderson: Like what?

Musk: One is the incredible aversion to risk within big aerospace firms. Even if better technology is available, they’re still using legacy components, often ones that were developed in the 1960s.

Anderson: I’ve heard that the attitude is essentially that you can’t fly a component that hasn’t already flown.

Musk: Right, which is obviously a catch-22, right? There should be a Groucho Marx joke about that. So, yeah, there’s a tremendous bias against taking risks. Everyone is trying to optimize their ass-covering.

Anderson: That’s a nice phrase.

Musk: The results are pretty crazy. One of our competitors, Orbital Sciences, has a contract to resupply the International Space Station, and their rocket honestly sounds like the punch line to a joke. It uses Russian rocket engines that were made in the ’60s. I don’t mean their design is from the ’60s—I mean they start with engines that were literally made in the ’60s and, like, packed away in Siberia somewhere.
thankfully i was at work when this happened, so cnn was on the tv. i got to see actual "breaking news", and i also got to see the rocket explode approximately 500 times in a row.
Space is hard. That's really all their is to it.

It's a shame, it's expensive, but thankfully no one was hurt and the ISS folks have plenty of supplies.
JFC, THERE not their.
@15 So Orbital Sciences is "Hammer Industries" to Musk's Tony Stark?

Sorry, watched Iron Man the other day so all my references are Iron Man related.
Oh, the humanity!
@14, the Russians sent up a cargo flight to the ISS about nine hours after the Antares Exploding Cigar set back down on the pad.
According to a report on NPR, the explosion was intentional and initiated by NASA after they detected a problem, in order to prevent the rocket from failing over a populated area.
@7: It doesn't cost trillions, and even though it likely cost millions, those millions are very well spent. Compared with, say, the boondoggles that our military spends on.

If that were the case then the photog deserves a double-slap for being such a clueless moron; NASA hasn't launched a manned spacecraft since STS-135 back in July of 2011.
@14, 21: Yeah, the Russian space program still has launch vehicles capable of reaching the ISS. (We used to have them too until the shuttles were retired.) Relations have chilled thanks to Putin's tomfoolery, but Russia won't try to hold the ISS hostage; it would ruin their reputation in the international community and they'd be unlikely to extract any concessions.
Honestly, I get the sense that NASA and Roscosmos are both sick of politics getting in the way of research.
Does anyone happen to know what color the rocket's eyes were? I understand that one blew this way and one blew the other.
@25: You know how Russia does things, it always uses plausible deniability. In order to hold the ISS hostage, all they would have to do is hold training in Crimea for certification on the Soyuz spacecraft (for economic investment or so other reason). If astronauts don't get certified, they can't fly. And if the US balks on using Russian visas (accepting that Crimea is Russian territory) to visit the training center in Crimea, it isn't Russia's fault. Too bad they lost access to the ISS, but Russia gave them an option, right?
I'm grateful the US government stills funds public art...
@15, you'll be interested in this:…
@8 I think we're all aware (or should be aware) that no aspect of the aerospace industry has a vertically integrated manufacturing concern exclusively within the US government. That's not the point. The point is that when NASA subcontracted in the past, the buck stopped with NASA, and therefore the US government. Now that every aspect has been subcontracted, the buck stops with a private company that in reality has no meaningful oversight. The work orders may say everything is up to spec and code, but for all we know the fucking thing may have been made out of papier mache.

But I'm sure that Orbital Sciences, with its $1.9 billion contract, would never skimp out on materials or safety checks in order to pad their bottom line. Because if there's one thing government contracting is known for, it's being not totally corrupt.

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