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Thread: SpaceX

  1. #1141
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    Hypnotically beautiful HD title card.

  2. #1142
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Shoot! I forgot to see if it was happening.
    Same, woke up late and was hurrying to get to church.

  3. #1143
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    I was out birding and happened to catch the rocket flame/plume in a gap in the clouds (it was mostly overcast in the area this morning). A few minutes later was "an earth shattering ka-boom!" and I thought SpaceX had suffered some sort of ground incident. Later, I figured it was the sonic boom of the 1st stage coming down to land! (It turns out there were 2 booms, but they seemed to merge from my vantage point.)

    I watched the replay at home when I got back and, man, it was odd seeing something "else" launching from that pad!

    CJSF
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  4. #1144
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    Read why this year could be SpaceX's year.

    https://arstechnica.com/science/2017...is-for-spacex/

    "SpaceX launched from the most hallowed ground of the US space enterprise on Sunday—the place where nearly all of the Moon launches occurred, and about 80 percent of all the space shuttle missions, including the vehicle's final flight in 2011. Just as SpaceX brought the pad back to life with its launch this weekend, so too could Launch Complex 39A rejuvenate the innovative rocket company based in California.

    It has been a difficult two years for SpaceX. Accidents in 2015 and 2016 cost the rocket company two boosters, and two payloads. On Friday, during a news conference near the launch pad, company president Gwynne Shotwell acknowledged that the last two years were "painful" for SpaceX, adding that it is hard to make money when you're not flying."

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  5. #1145
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    A set-back.

    The ITS tank ruptured:
    https://www.reddit.com/r/spacex/comm..._anacortes_wa/

    It may have been tested to destruction--but there was one note of concern:

    A quote:

    Looks like it separated right along the seam.

    I am going to interpret this as being a bad result for the test, since it failed in longitudinal stress, rather than hoop stress. A hoop stress failure will typically indicate that the vessel was efficiently designed, since longitudinal stresses are usually lower than hoop stresses. This is applicable to metallic pressure vessels, which is what my experience is in. It is also possible it was intended to fail along the seam, but usually, a good seam/weld will be designed to be a little stronger than the bulk material.

    On the other hand--we saw from Mythbusters last night the raw power of metal and pressure-feds:

    https://thehighfrontier.blog/2016/02...-of-bob-truax/

    UAE wants to go to Mars.

    Musk should go to Alabama. We have shipyards--a steel plant right on the coast--and a new Airbus plant.

    Use UAE funding to build Sea Dragon and kick composites to the curb.

    And since it will be in Alabama--Mr. Musk--Sen. Shelby will be your friend too.

    It is best to work with NASA.

    Falcon heavy is a better rocket for the Griffin 1.5 architecture than Ares I. SLS can launch something like Altair and an insertion stage.

    Later--for Mars, SLS launches a high dollar Mars-ship itself--but Musk's Sea Dragon launches big dumb payloads--a huge supply of fuel and tankage the SLS-launched Mars ship can simply dock with--then go on its way.

    This would cost less than a landing ITS/BFR combo.

    Over time--as Sea Dragon flights become routine--then build ITS after some composite advances can be had.
    Last edited by publiusr; 2017-Mar-03 at 10:51 PM.

  6. #1146
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    Wow! Anacortes is my hometown, and about half an hour from where I live now. Lot's of family and friends, there, and I had no idea this was going on

  7. #1147
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    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    A set-back.

    The ITS tank ruptured:
    https://www.reddit.com/r/spacex/comm..._anacortes_wa/

    It may have been tested to destruction--but there was one note of concern:

    A quote:

    Looks like it separated right along the seam.

    I am going to interpret this as being a bad result for the test, since it failed in longitudinal stress, rather than hoop stress. A hoop stress failure will typically indicate that the vessel was efficiently designed, since longitudinal stresses are usually lower than hoop stresses. This is applicable to metallic pressure vessels, which is what my experience is in. It is also possible it was intended to fail along the seam, but usually, a good seam/weld will be designed to be a little stronger than the bulk material.

    On the other hand--we saw from Mythbusters last night the raw power of metal and pressure-feds:

    https://thehighfrontier.blog/2016/02...-of-bob-truax/

    UAE wants to go to Mars.

    Musk should go to Alabama. We have shipyards--a steel plant right on the coast--and a new Airbus plant.

    Use UAE funding to build Sea Dragon and kick composites to the curb.

    And since it will be in Alabama--Mr. Musk--Sen. Shelby will be your friend too.

    It is best to work with NASA.

    Falcon heavy is a better rocket for the Griffin 1.5 architecture than Ares I. SLS can launch something like Altair and an insertion stage.

    Later--for Mars, SLS launches a high dollar Mars-ship itself--but Musk's Sea Dragon launches big dumb payloads--a huge supply of fuel and tankage the SLS-launched Mars ship can simply dock with--then go on its way.

    This would cost less than a landing ITS/BFR combo.

    Over time--as Sea Dragon flights become routine--then build ITS after some composite advances can be had.
    The tank was almost spherical. Stresses were largely the same no matter the direction. And the notion that a seam between composite parts should be stronger than the parts is obviously flawed...the parts are made of seams. The join between the two halves had less surface area to take the load.

    It was an experimental tank, and the very carbon fiber object they built on such a scale. That they broke it says nothing at all about the state of composite technology.

  8. #1148
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    SpaceX successfully performs a static fire test.

    https://spaceflightnow.com/2017/03/1...tic-fire-test/

    Held down by heavy-duty restraints, a Falcon 9 rocket fired up its nine Merlin engines for more than three seconds Thursday evening in a key readiness test before launching from Florida with a commercial television broadcast satellite next week.

    The nine Merlin 1D engines ignited at 6 p.m. EST (2300 GMT) at Kennedy Space Center’s launch pad 39A, sending a rumble across the marshy landscape at the Florida spaceport.

    The test is a customary step in SpaceX launch campaigns, offering a chance to wring out any kinks in the Falcon 9 rocket and ground systems, practice countdown procedures for the launch team, and verify the readiness of the booster’s main propulsion system.

    The rocket will now be returned to the hangar at pad 39A for attachment of the EchoStar 23 spacecraft, a commercial television broadcast satellite that will beam video programming to homes and businesses in Brazil.

    Liftoff is scheduled for a two-and-a-half hour window opening at 1:34 a.m. EDT (0534 GMT) Tuesday.

    Attempts to perform the hotfire test Tuesday and Wednesday were scrubbed for unknown reasons. SpaceX declined to comment on launch preparations in advance of the static fire, but the delays forced a two-day slip in the mission’s targeted launch date from Sunday to Tuesday.

  9. #1149
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    SpaceX wins another contract to launch a GPS satellite.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/spacex...234042835.html

    "Elon Musk's Space Exploration Technologies has won a GPS satellite launch contract over rival United Launch Alliance, a partnership of the top two U.S. aerospace companies Lockheed Martin Corp. and Boeing Co., the U.S. Air Force said on Tuesday."

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  10. #1150
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    SpaceX is once again launching commercial satellites. This not only does wonders to their bottom line but takes a lot of pressure from their customers concerned with, if their satellites will ever launch in a decent time frame.

    Now SpaceX is gearing to launch a Falcon 9 with a 1st stage that was recovered in one of their previous launches. They hope to do this before the end of his month. Good luck SpaceX. Fingers crossed all goes well.

  11. #1151
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    This one wasn't intended to be a soft landing anyway from what I understand. From the webcast.
    " The EchoStar XXIII launch will liftoff from the historic Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. SpaceX will not attempt to land Falcon 9’s first stage after launch due to mission requirements."

  12. #1152
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    Quote Originally Posted by ravens_cry View Post
    This one wasn't intended to be a soft landing anyway from what I understand. From the webcast.
    " The EchoStar XXIII launch will liftoff from the historic Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. SpaceX will not attempt to land Falcon 9’s first stage after launch due to mission requirements."
    Correct. In the UT forum, Fraser has a post referring to a "legless" Falcon 9.
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  13. #1153
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    And don't forget the Indian space program. It has also been making steady progress in the recent years

  14. #1154
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    SpaceX did a successful hotfire test of its reusable 1st stage, ahead of its Thursday launch.

    https://spaceflightnow.com/2017/03/2...unch-thursday/

    "SpaceX has set the first launch of a “flight-proven” Falcon 9 rocket for Thursday evening after running the booster through a hold-down engine firing Monday at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

    Nearly ready for its second trip into space, the Falcon 9’s first stage booster ignited at launch pad 39A at 2 p.m. EDT (1800 GMT) and throttled up to full power — roughly 1.7 million pounds of thrust — for a few seconds as clamps held the rocket on the ground.

    The brief ignition of the rocket’s nine Merlin 1D main engines occurred after SpaceX’s launch team, overseeing a computer-controlled sequencer, prepped the launcher by filling with its supplies of super-chilled, densified RP-1 kerosene and liquid oxygen propellants."

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  15. #1155
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    Omg! And I'm in Florida then.

  16. #1156
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    How much of this booster is actually reused? Rocket body, sure. Engines? Systems? Anybody got any good sources on this?
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  17. #1157
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glom View Post
    Omg! And I'm in Florida then.
    OMG! So am I! Oh, wait, I live here!

    Whereabouts will you be?

    CJSF
    "I found my mind on the ground below. I was looking down, it was looking back.
    I was in the sky, all dressed in black.
    See the constellation ride across the sky. No cigar, no lady on his arm.
    Just a guy made of dots and lines."
    -They Might Be Giants, "See The Constellation"

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  18. #1158
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    How much of this booster is actually reused? Rocket body, sure. Engines? Systems? Anybody got any good sources on this?
    I don't really know in this specific case, but the general idea is to be able to eventually turn a booster around in a matter of days. Absolutely the engines are intended to be reused many times, though the engines on this particular booster are not the planned final version. I'd be disappointed to find out that they had substantially refurbished or replaced the engines on this booster. That would be out of character for Space X. And it would pretty much be a cover-up.

  19. #1159
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    Quote Originally Posted by CJSF View Post
    OMG! So am I! Oh, wait, I live here!

    Whereabouts will you be?

    CJSF
    Orlando. Mentioned it to my party who might be interested in getting close enough to see the streak of light, both streaks of light (this is RTLS right?)
    Quote Originally Posted by Darrell View Post
    I don't really know in this specific case, but the general idea is to be able to eventually turn a booster around in a matter of days. Absolutely the engines are intended to be reused many times, though the engines on this particular booster are not the planned final version. I'd be disappointed to find out that they had substantially refurbished or replaced the engines on this booster. That would be out of character for Space X. And it would pretty much be a cover-up.
    The engines are the most expensive part so only reusing the shell would not quite carry the cache we're hoping for.

  20. #1160
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    How much of this booster is actually reused? Rocket body, sure. Engines? Systems? Anybody got any good sources on this?
    The entire first stage is reused. The intent is to fly multiple times without having to do more than replenish consumable fluids, Musk expects to be able to get 10 flights before major refurbishment is needed. They're not there yet, but the Block 5 upgrade is supposed to be mostly about improving reusability.

    The engines are built to be run repeatedly, and are fired several times before they get used on the first launch. They took the stage which came back through the roughest reentry (a GTO launch with a heavy payload) and did 8 full-duration test fires on it, some of them only a day apart, and they haven't said they're finished with it...they've just got the one stand, and other rockets to test. The body is probably the limiting factor on reuse, and I'm guessing it is the main target of the Block 5 upgrades, now that they know which parts take the worst beating.

  21. #1161
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    How close to the launch site would one have to be to see it? Anyone good stops for the casual visitor far enough out? What about pitching up at the car park of the Hall of Astronauts outside KSC?

  22. #1162
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    I certainly understand that's the plan, I'd just like to know how close to it they are getting with this one. If it was me, I'd be playing it very safe, replacing anything that was even slightly questionable.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  23. #1163
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    I certainly understand that's the plan, I'd just like to know how close to it they are getting with this one. If it was me, I'd be playing it very safe, replacing anything that was even slightly questionable.
    The visible damage has been superficial. There's been talk that they'll only get a few flights out of the current version, but they won't have time for more than that before Block 5 is flying, so it's not clear if that's because they'll be worn out or because it'll be cheaper to just operate the upgraded version.

  24. #1164
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glom View Post
    How close to the launch site would one have to be to see it? Anyone good stops for the casual visitor far enough out? What about pitching up at the car park of the Hall of Astronauts outside KSC?
    I know my mom and brother can see a small streak from the launches from their house near Lady Lake, so if you have a clear view east from Orlando, you should see something. If you can't make the trip to the Space Coast (Cocoa/Titusville would be closest from Orlando), if you can at least get east of the Airport, you should see a little something.

    There are usually quite a few people who stop and park just before the causeway bridge on 405 near Titusville:
    https://www.google.com/maps/dir//28..../data=!3m1!1e3

    or Jetty Park in Cape Canaveral:
    https://www.google.com/maps/dir//28..../data=!3m1!1e3

    But get to both places a bit early.

    CJSF
    "I found my mind on the ground below. I was looking down, it was looking back.
    I was in the sky, all dressed in black.
    See the constellation ride across the sky. No cigar, no lady on his arm.
    Just a guy made of dots and lines."
    -They Might Be Giants, "See The Constellation"

    lonelybirder.org

  25. #1165
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    Glom,

    If the sky is clear you can see launches from tens of miles away. Less if you are to the west, towards Orlando for example, because the rockets launch eastward. To give some idea, my daughter, 8 years old at the time, took this video footage of the Falcon 9 launch on 12/03/13 with a hand held pocket camera (Nikon Coolpix S100) from a location approximately 70 miles south of the launch site. You can clearly see stage separation and if you pay attention you can also see the 2 halves of the payload shroud after they've separated, starting about 1:57. I wouldn't bother watching past about 2:30 or so. (Note, the man you hear in the video is not me but a neighbor, I was at work.)

  26. #1166
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    Very cool, Darrell. Many years ago, when I was in Seal Beach CA for work, I saw an evening Titan IV launch from Vandenberg AFB. That's around 150 miles, I think. It helped, of course, that they launch to the south. Quite spectacular. Lots of UFO reports because it was a military launch and not announced in advance.
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  27. #1167
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    Thanks Trebuchet. I was fairly amazed that such a tiny camera / lens could get that kind of image (the payload fairing) at that range.

    I've never seen a launch from Vandenberg, but I've seen many launches from Cape Canaveral. The most notable being the first STS launch in 1981, from the closet location they've ever allowed people to watch (father worked in the program). After that one time they decided it was too close. It was literally awe-some. The sound was overwhelming. Everything vibrated including clothing (or maybe it was eyeballs vibrating) and internal organs. Some people felt sick.

    The first STS night time launch was also very spectacular. The extent to which it lit up the horizon was surprising. It looked pretty much as if the sun were rising. Even the fish seemed to think the sun was rising as they suddenly started jumping, before the sound reached our location.

  28. #1168
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    Lift-off
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  29. #1169
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    And nailed the landing of stage 1 back on the drone ship!
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    Congrats to SpaceX great job.

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