SpaceX Falcon Launch Vehicle Unveiled in Washington D.C.

By Keith Cowing
December 4, 2003
Filed under

SpaceX held a reception this evening at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington DC. Several hundred quests were in attendance.

But the star of the show wasn’t human – but rather, a Falcon launch vehicle.

SpaceX transported its first Falcon across the U.S. on a special trailer to be unveiled in Washington.

According to people who escorted the rocket into Washington (along with a police escort), it drew quite a lot of attention from people passing it on the highway.

Once parked across the street from the National Air and Space Museum, with its transport cover removed, the Falcon continued to attract attention throughout the rush hour and into the evening.

Among the speakers at the rocket’s unveiling were Elon Musk, President and CEO of SpaceX and Patti Grace Smith, Associate Administrator for Commercial Space Transportation, FAA. Musk and Smith were introduced by Keith Cowing, editor of NASA Watch.com

The Falcon will begin its journey back across the U.S. this weekend – once a series of snow storms passes through the Metro Washington area.

Click on photo to enlarge. All photos copyright SpaceRef Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Aft end of the Falcon. The Air and Space Museum is in the background.

Falcon on its trailer parked in front of the Department of Transportation building across the street from the Air and Space Museum

The Falcon after dark

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk (r) pointing out a feature on the Falcon

Payload shroud and second stage of the Falcon

Closeup of the payload shroud

First stage engine

Elon Musk (l) looks on as Patti Grace Smith speaks at the Falcon’s unveiling

Closeup of first stage engine

SpaceRef co-founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.