As a taxpayer I truly hope that SLS will blow up on the launch pad taking its launch infrastructure with it. This would be the best possible outcome. Especially if it immediately results in cutting off the pork cost plus contractors. That river of money could go to more efficient, nimble and modern competitors who could so much more with even a portion of that money.
Some possible failure modes for SLS are that it fails to blow up, or does not blow up spectacularly enough to get cancelled, or does not make good enough videos for social media.
The only possible "good outcome" of it blowing up on the pad is, if it cuts off the pork train. In the event that it doesn't, it's literally just a wasted mission. Which would be sad.
Even a successful mission of SLS is almost entirely a gigantic waste of money. The "success" part of an SLS mission does not make up for the 19/20 (95%) waste if another launch system could do the job at 1/20 (5%) the price. ($4+ billion vs, say $200 million)
So a huge fireball is 20/20 (or 1.0) waste of money vs a successful mission which is 19/20 (0.95) waste of money.
Those numbers are painful, but all too accurate. SpaceX was a huge gamble at first, but now they've proven their system works. To be able to take Space Travel and Exploration to the next level, we can't rely on the old way of doing things.
Launching means just getting off the ground, right?
That says nothing about whether or not it will actually make it to space, nevermind around the moon and back.
If it goes kaboom 30 seconds after lift-off it technically launched, though.
There was some commentary during ascent about passing points where they could demonstrate various components / systems, such as: even if we abort now we can still (possibly) demonstrate the re-entry heat shield with sufficient velocity to equate to a moon-return.
Voting for Wednesday.
Well, would you look at that...
You and I, plus whoever else the third vote was from were actually right! :)
And it didn't even blow up on the way to space, either!!
When I saw the news this morning I now know that it is fairly safe for me to vote for Wednesday Nov 16th.
The 27 actual poll results before the launch were:
3 - Today* (winner, winner!)0 - Saturday, November 19th1 - Friday, November 25th2 - Sometime in December11 - Sometime in 20238 - Never2 - Other (please specify in comments)
* Technically it was yesterday here still when it launched, since it was still well before midnight Pacific time and thus still Tuesday. :)
I voted for Sometime in 2023. I had no faith that it would actually launch this Calendar year. What with the inspection after the hurricane and all that, too.
Well, now it's 12 votes on the first option. Seems nine people have voted after they knew the answer. :-)More interesting is that the total number of votes is now 45. Which means that another 9 people voted for options that were provably false at the time of voting.
Q: When will SLS land humans on the moon?
Among the available answers, there must be,
A: Ask me again when Musk's Mars mission returns.