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Thread: SpaceX

  1. #1501
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    Yes, they descend by parachute.

    And, to clarify, the fairings could probably land fairly safely in the ocean and then be fished out. By fairly safely I mean without serious damage. Apparently they want to be able to recover them without them going in the ocean because of how damaging ocean water can be.

  2. #1502
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darrell View Post
    Yeah. My first thought when I saw that article and the pictures was, is that boat armored? A point brought up in the article is how are they going to catch both pieces with that thing? Contrive the returns to be at different times somehow? With an interval large enough to remove the 1st one from the capture device? Catch both at the same time? That seems . . . , crunchy. Or is this just a proof of concept and they only intend to catch 1 of them with this particular gizmo?
    If you read the article you linked to, it addresses the 1 boat concerns.

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  3. #1503
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    "No it doesn't" is my first thought. My next is, "what do you mean by 'addresses the 1 boat concerns?'" It doesn't address them any further than what I wrote in my comment, which was intended to be, and even on a second read seems to me to be, a fairly accurate paraphrase of the article.

    The extent of addressing the 1 boat concern is, from the article,

    Given that only one such modified vessel has been spotted at this point, it can be assumed that this recovery effort is an experimental test meant to only attempt the capture of one half of the payload fairing.
    and,

    SpaceX certainly is known to move quickly with hardware development and testing, but the recovery of two fairings on the same vessel seems more likely to be a future improvement that will follow mastery of a single recovery at a time.
    Which seems to be covered reasonably well by this line from my comment.

    Or is this just a proof of concept and they only intend to catch 1 of them with this particular gizmo?
    Additionally, given that the article is by people that have nothing to do with SpaceX, have no information from SpaceX and are, as the author(s) clearly say, speculating based on a few pictures of equipment that they clearly say they don't know how it is intended to work, I don't understand what you mean by "the article addresses the 1 boat concerns."

  4. #1504
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    You seemed to be asking (somewhat incredulously sounding) questions about there being one boat, as if there was no answer, while the article you linked to had specific information that answered your question? So?? ??

    ?


    ???

    ?

    CJSF
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    Vaporized with extreme prejudice and shot into outer space.

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  5. #1505
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    I have to agree with Darrell. It only addresses the issues if you consider “we don’t know, but here are some possibilities “ as addressing them.


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  6. #1506
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    I didn't formulate the 1 boat concerns. I got them from the article. They were speculations made by the author(s) of the article and I merely paraphrased them.

  7. #1507
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    Mr. Musk said during the post-FH news conference that they hoped to have fairing recovery solved "within six months," and they had a boat with "a big catcher's mitt" on it for that purpose. He said one of the big problems was the turbulence from the shell interfering with the parachute.

    He also said that they felt they could use the catcher's mitt boat to grab Dragons, "if NASA wanted us to."

    I'm guessing this means they have one or more of the following:
    * A very fast boat
    * An extremely accurate idea of where the object(s) will land
    * Steerable parachutes

  8. #1508
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    If I remember correctly, all experiments with fairing recovery currently focus on one fairing half anyway.

  9. #1509
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    The success of SpaceX Falcon Heavy launch should spur India to aim higher.

    http://www.firstpost.com/tech/news-a...s-4353987.html

    The successful launch of the Falcon Heavy rocket on 6 February, orchestrated by Elon Musk’s SpaceX, was ground-breaking and revolutionary in more ways than one. SpaceX was established to explore the possibility of human colonisation of other planets, particularly Mars, and to find cost-effective methods for space travel and exploration. Falcon Heavy has brought us one step closer to both.

    The most powerful operational rocket to have been invented, Falcon Heavy, with its reusable boosters, has the capacity to lift nearly 1,41,000 pounds of payload into orbit at a record low cost – at $1300 per kg of payload, as against the space shuttle’s $60,000 per kg.

    Since the very beginning of space exploration, it has only been government agencies like the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in the United States that have led breakthroughs and inventions. The Falcon Heavy launch is monumental particularly because it is a reflection of what the future looks like for private sector-led innovation in space, truly the last frontier left for mankind to conquer. The US has allowed private competition to flourish in this space, and we’re witnessing cutting-edge competition between the likes of Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos, battling to find cost-effective ways to discover and unravel this final frontier.

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    An article in Space Review that pours some cold water on the impact that Falcon Heavy is going to have.

    http://www.thespacereview.com/article/3433/1

    First things first: SpaceX should be congratulated for the successful first flight of the Falcon Heavy. Developing a new launch vehicle, even one derived from an existing, successful one, is a major accomplishment, magnified here by the sheer scale of the vehicle. Remember when people were skeptical that the rocket, with its 27 first stage engines, could ever get off the ground?

    This success has led to a wave of punditry about the future of spaceflight in the Falcon Heavy era, including in this publication. Some proclaim that the rocket will open a new golden age of solar system exploration. Others see the rocket as a death warrant for NASA’s Space Launch System.

    But technical achievements aren’t enough to ensure programmatic success. While many see Falcon Heavy as a revolutionary achievement, it’s more of an evolutionary one. It will probably have less of an effect than the smaller Falcon 9, or the future “Big Falcon Rocket”, or BFR, the company is developing. There are several reasons why the Falcon Heavy won’t have nearly as big an impact of the space industry as many space enthusiasts believe.

  11. #1511
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    How many times in that article is the author going to name one rocket and mean another?

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    See Mr. Steven’s fancy new netting.

    https://www.teslarati.com/spacex-fai...ing-giant-net/

    Teslarati’s West coast photographer Pauline Acalin has captured some amazing photos of one of SpaceX’s most immediately recognizable fairing recovery vessels berthed in the Port of San Pedro. For the first time ever, the vessel (officially named Mr. Steven) has had its iconic claw rigged with a massive net intended to gently capture Falcon 9 payload fairings.

    SpaceX has been trying in earnest to recover its rockets’ fairings for approximately one year, but has yet to recover a fairing intact. While the company appeared to have recovered at least one large fragment on the East coast, success has proven elusive, and CEO Elon Musk noted in press conferences before and after Falcon Heavy’s inaugural launch that the task had proven more difficult than was anticipated. Despite the difficulties, SpaceX has no intention of surrendering their valuable fairings (a $5 million pallet of cash, as Musk once joked) to the sea.

  13. #1513
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    Well, nuts. I got up early for today's launch and it's just been scrubbed due to upper level winds.

    Question, however: Is that image of four planets they use supposed to be terraforming of Mars? Sure looks like it. Musk likes thinking big!
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    SpaceX gets the thumb's up for launching some categories of science missions.

    http://spacenews.com/nasa-certifies-...ence-missions/

    NASA has certified the current version of the SpaceX Falcon 9 to launch some categories of science missions, a milestone needed for the upcoming, but delayed, launch of an astronomy spacecraft.

    NASA disclosed the certification in its full fiscal year 2019 budget proposal, released Feb. 14, in a section about NASA’s Launch Services Program (LSP). “In January 2018, SpaceX successfully completed ‘Category 2’ certification of the SpaceX Falcon 9 ‘Full Thrust’ with LSP which supports the launch of the NASA Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) mission in March 2018,” it stated.

    A passage on the following page appeared to contradict that claim, stating that certification of that version of the Falcon 9 “is nearing completion.” However, agency spokesperson Cheryl Warner said Feb. 15 that LSP completed the Category 2 certification of the rocket Jan. 11.

  15. #1515
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    I've noticed that the in-flight abort test for the Crew Dragon has dropped off the schedule on the Space Flight Insider launch schedule. It had been scheduled for April of this year. I have not seen any news announcing anything, just the change on the calendar.

    Any news?

  16. #1516
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    Just out of interest, I believe I saw a comment from Elon Musk saying the Falcon Heavy wasn't going to be used to take people into space. If so, what does that mean for the two space tourists who had supposedly paid good money for a trip around the Moon - they were going to be launched on a Falcon Heavy.

  17. #1517
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    SpaceX

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter B View Post
    Just out of interest, I believe I saw a comment from Elon Musk saying the Falcon Heavy wasn't going to be used to take people into space. If so, what does that mean for the two space tourists who had supposedly paid good money for a trip around the Moon - they were going to be launched on a Falcon Heavy.
    ETA.
    On February 5, 2018, Elon Musk announced that Falcon Heavy will not be flying humans, and that the lunar mission is more likely to be carried out with BFR.[3][5]
    Looks like now they’ll use the BFR, if at all.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/BFR_...t)?wprov=sfti1




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    Last edited by schlaugh; 2018-Feb-24 at 05:54 AM.

  18. #1518
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    Falcon Heavy may not carry humans but the commercial launch is doing nicely, thank you. Next launch is in June with some US military satellites.

    https://spaceflightnow.com/2018/03/0...-heavy-launch/

    More than two dozen satellites from the U.S. military, NASA and research institutions will ride into orbit on SpaceX’s second Falcon Heavy rocket launch, a mission currently scheduled for liftoff in June, a military spokesperson said.

    The flight is one of three Falcon Heavy missions that could blast off in 2018, after a successful maiden test flight Feb. 6 and the launch of an Arabsat communications craft around the end of the year.

    Known as the Space Test Program-2, or STP-2, mission, the Falcon Heavy launch will launch with 25 spacecraft inside its nose cone, according to a spokesperson from the U.S. Air Force’s Space and Missile Systems Center.

  19. #1519
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    I am disappointed they're not man-rating the Falcon Heavy. Yes, the Big Falcon Rocket* is neat and all, buuuut it's a huge freaking step, which means a long, looong development time, if it gets off the ground at all. I'd love to see some more lunar missions, even in a relatively small capsule.
    *Yes, that's totally what that means, totally, absolutely.

  20. #1520
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    Quote Originally Posted by ravens_cry View Post
    I am disappointed they're not man-rating the Falcon Heavy. Yes, the Big Falcon Rocket* is neat and all, buuuut it's a huge freaking step, which means a long, looong development time, if it gets off the ground at all. I'd love to see some more lunar missions, even in a relatively small capsule.
    *Yes, that's totally what that means, totally, absolutely.
    It'd be a lot of work, for probably no more than a few launches...and it'd take resources away from BFR. Falcon Heavy has the lifting capacity to be useful for planetary probes, but is still too limited and too expensive to support anything but very small scale operations.

    BFR is a smaller jump in payload terms than Falcon 1 to Falcon 9 was, and is just a single core. Falcon Heavy wasn't slow to develop because it was big, it was always trying to catch up to the changes in the Falcon 9, and connecting boosters in parallel and getting them to not tear each other apart is highly non-trivial. On top of that, they more than doubled the payload of the Falcon 9, and so didn't have much reason to put a higher priority on the Falcon Heavy.

    BFR isn't dependent on another vehicle, and both stages can operate as independent vehicles, so they'll be able to start getting flight experience quite early on. Musk's schedule is certainly ambitious and unlikely ("aspirational", as he described it), but you can't expect its development to be like the Falcon Heavy's.

  21. #1521
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    Loads of people were saying Falcon Heavy was going to be prohibitive to develop, but it's here. A little late, but then what isn't.

  22. #1522
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    Quote Originally Posted by ravens_cry View Post
    I am disappointed they're not man-rating the Falcon Heavy. Yes, the Big Falcon Rocket* is neat and all, buuuut it's a huge freaking step, which means a long, looong development time, if it gets off the ground at all. I'd love to see some more lunar missions, even in a relatively small capsule.
    Do you need a man-rated Falcon Heavy for a lunar mission? They are man-rating the Falcon 9 for the Dragon capsule. Couldn't you use a Falcon Heavy to put the lunar hardware into orbit, sent the people up in a Dragon on a Falcon 9, rendezvous with the Falcon Heavy load, and head for the Moon?
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  23. #1523
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    Do you need a man-rated Falcon Heavy for a lunar mission? They are man-rating the Falcon 9 for the Dragon capsule. Couldn't you use a Falcon Heavy to put the lunar hardware into orbit, sent the people up in a Dragon on a Falcon 9, rendezvous with the Falcon Heavy load, and head for the Moon?
    If we're just talking about the promised lunar fly-around, I bet you could do it with two Falcon 9's: one with the crew, one with the hardware and fuel to get you around the Moon. Of course, they'd have to actually build the lunar stage, probably try it out, etc. That's a lot of diverted resources.

    I suppose if there's no pressing need to fly around the Moon until the BFR is ready, they might as well save their money and time.

  24. #1524
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZappBrannigan View Post
    If we're just talking about the promised lunar fly-around, I bet you could do it with two Falcon 9's: one with the crew, one with the hardware and fuel to get you around the Moon. Of course, they'd have to actually build the lunar stage, probably try it out, etc. That's a lot of diverted resources.

    I suppose if there's no pressing need to fly around the Moon until the BFR is ready, they might as well save their money and time.
    BFR will have a lot more room, bigger windows, and toilets...worth waiting a few years for. As for SpaceX, BFR should be cheaper to fly than a Falcon Heavy, so even if they discount the price they could make more profits. I suspect all parties involved are happy with this arrangement.

  25. #1525
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZappBrannigan View Post
    If we're just talking about the promised lunar fly-around, I bet you could do it with two Falcon 9's: one with the crew, one with the hardware and fuel to get you around the Moon. Of course, they'd have to actually build the lunar stage, probably try it out, etc. That's a lot of diverted resources.

    I suppose if there's no pressing need to fly around the Moon until the BFR is ready, they might as well save their money and time.
    Both Musk and Gwynne Shotwell say the BFR is progressing rapidly. Musk reports hop & booster-less flight tests of the Spaceship in early 2019, and Shotwell says a BFR orbital test in 2020.

    This synchs up with the contracted delivery of Raptor to the US Air Force by December 31, they having partially funded its development - twice (2016 and 2017.) The project was said to be for an F9/FH upper stage, but if BFR is available for the upcoming EELV heavy lift competition the USAF won't mind

    This progress is why a crew-rated Falcon Heavy was put off. If BFR progress stalls it may return, but don't bet on it as the first Spaceship is under construction - allegedly in San Pedro.
    Last edited by docmordrid; 2018-Mar-17 at 09:35 AM.

  26. #1526
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    I've begun to wonder if the FH is a solution without a problem. What's the market for it? F9 is doing fine launching large satellites. It won't be man-rated. Who needs it?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    I've begun to wonder if the FH is a solution without a problem. What's the market for it? F9 is doing fine launching large satellites. It won't be man-rated. Who needs it?
    Numerous large GEO satellites can't be launched by Falcon 9 without expending the first stage. The Heavy can do the job while only expending the upper stage.

  28. #1528
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    And FH is "only" like 50% more expensive to launch than F9 (though with the different levels of reusability available, it's really hard to compare apples with apples here), so it's not like a golden mammoth that nobody can afford. That said, I won't see it reaching 50 launches any times soon, and had they known how difficult it would be to develop from the start, we might have never had FH.
    Last edited by Nicolas; 2018-Mar-17 at 08:23 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    I've begun to wonder if the FH is a solution without a problem. What's the market for it? F9 is doing fine launching large satellites. It won't be man-rated. Who needs it?
    Yeah, Musk revealed they had thought of canceling Falcon Heavy a couple of times.

    But he has also stated that $/kg of payload continues to fall as the rocket size increases. It seems to me their work (and Blue Origin's) is predicated on the belief that the market will be there for increased payload to space. I agree.

  30. #1530
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicolas View Post
    And FH is "only" like 50% more expensive to launch than F9 (though with the different levels of reusability available, it's really hard to compare apples with apples here), so it's not like a golden mammoth that nobody can afford. That said, I won't see it reaching 50 launches any times soon, and had they known how difficult it would be to develop from the start, we might have never had FH.
    The available prices are a bit out of date. Musk said in some recent tweets that expending the center core of the Heavy would be $95 million, that that was only slightly higher than an expendable Falcon 9 (so expendable flights will be more expensive with Block 5, no surprise there), and a fully expendable Falcon Heavy was $150 million. Other flights of the Heavy are going to be only a little higher than the recoverable Falcon 9 launches, ~$60ish million. They seem to treat Falcon Heavy as just the upper payload range of the Falcon 9 as far as the non-expendable launches go, which makes some sense.

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