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SpaceX Falcon 9 Launch


These are some shots from a road trip to watch the first SpaceX Falcon rocket launch from Vandenberg AFB. For SpaceX, this was a first launch of the Falcon 9 rocket, and first launch from the Vandenberg location. For me, it was also the first rocket launch where I was close enough to hear the rocket. We were about 3 miles away from the launch pad (Launch Complex 4 at 34.632706°N 120.613393°W), to the northeast, on W. Ocean Avenue out of Lompoc (34°40'1" N 120°33'21" W). Ocean Avenue runs right out to the shore, terminating at an Amtrak station, but for this launch, it was blocked off just beyond where we parked.

Liftoff
Liftoff

Time-lapse sequences with magnified inset view of the Falcon:

Time-lapse of launch - Short version at 15x speed
Time-lapse of launch - same as above, but at 1x speed with sound for first part of launch
Technical details: Nikon D700, Sigma 15mm fisheye lens, 3 sec. interval