SpaceX Updates (Thread 7)


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Draggendrop

Just an opinion, but I believe the mention of  "10 tests" was just a display of intent. An entry burn, static fire and those monster full duration tests are "apples and oranges". I believe they will/have monitored all testing...but...under no circumstances will they allow it to get to a point of a major failure. That is the only test stand there for full thrust and regular production testing of mission cores, as far as I know,

 

This could also be perceived as an issue to be addressed soon, being that if this test pad were to go down...big production ripple.

 

Just an opinion.....teflon suit now on...fire away...:woot:

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DocM

If it blows at McGregor they could do tests at KSC or Vandy.

 

From the most recent Commercial Crew progress report (May 2016), Falcon 9 has now,

 

"Completed all three demonstration flights needed for Range approval to use Automated Flight Termination System." 

 

aka: AFTS

 

No more guy on the big red button.

 

Tech Briefs... (the below proposal is now live)

Quote

>
The AFTS can augment or replace the functions of the traditional humanin- the-loop system. Redundant AFTS processors evaluate data from onboard Global Positioning System (GPS) and inertial measurement unit (IMU) navigation sensors. Configurable rulebased algorithms are used to make flight termination decisions. The mission rules are developed by the local Range Safety Authorities using the inventory of rule types taken from current human-in-the-loop operational flight safety practices. The main benefit of the AFTS is to decrease the need for permanent ground-based range safety assets with a corresponding savings in operational costs, and to increase the number of potential launch sites and corridors. The ultimate goal of this project is to produce an autonomous flight safety reference design that may be commercialized for industry use.
>

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Draggendrop

Ooops, forgot about that, but that would be when Vandy is available and reliable. At the Cape, we would still have issues with 24 hours consumables recovery as well as "ordered dead time" such as NRO launches. At least there are options. I would think that they would feel better once Boca is up and running, having control of their own destiny that way.

 

:D

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DocM

Vandy Will be ready for the launch of Iridium Next in September. The delay is because of USAF launches.

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DocM

Oops

 

From LA County FD twitter

 

Doesn't sound as if it was the batteries.

 

LAC Incident Alert ‏@lacfd      *Commercial Bldg Fire* FS162 [Hawthorne] 1 Rocket Rd. Q162 O/S of a commercial bldg w/ water flow activation & fire in 1 room. "Space X IC"

 

LAC Incident Alert ‏@lacfd    
*Space X IC* BC18 O/S, assuming command. Reports a lithium battery room involved w/ fire. Believes sprinkler system holding fire in check.
       
LAC Incident Alert ‏@lacfd      
*Space X IC* Calling Knockdown. Fire confined to battery room. Holding all 1st Alarm units. #LACoFD

 

LAC Incident Alert ‏@lacfd        
*SpaceX IC* Requesting LACo Heath-HazMat. Holding E21 Q162 Q159 BC18 for overhaul/water push. All other units released. #LACoFD

 

LAC Incident Alert ‏@lacfd      
*SpaceX IC* Update: This was a 50' x 50' room w/ lithium batteries inside that caught on fire. Sprinklers held fire in check. Releasing E21.

Edited by DocM
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Draggendrop

Wow...At least it was contained in what I assume to be a commercial battery storage facility on site.

 

Hopefully no one was hurt.

 

LACoFD Incident reports, twitter

Edited by Draggendrop
added twitter link
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DocM

SES-10 confirmed for October.

 

This is a first launcher reuse candidate, using the CRS-8 core.

 

 

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Draggendrop

Bit of an overplay with the SpaceX fire. The fire was in a lab, with no batteries, and was contained quickly. The twitter link was run by volunteers and got a bit ahead of themselves.

 

Overall, a gauge, to mark interest in SpaceX news by......would a small lab fire at Humpty Dumpty achieve this "press"...not bad at all.

 

:)

 

--------------------

 

As per Doc's mention of the antenna transfer...

 

SpaceX to build new ground stations in Texas
 

Quote

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — In addition to building a commercial spaceport for orbital launches along Boca Chica Beach in south Texas, SpaceX is also adding a couple of NASA-heritage ground tracking radars to track the Dragon spacecraft.

 

A local Texas television station reported that the antennas will be shipped to SpaceX’s ground tracking facility from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station’s Space Launch Complex 40 in Florida, adding to the company’s increasingly-sophisticated facilities for conducting commercial space launches and spacecraft operations in Texas.

 

The $100 million, 49-acre Boca Chica property, located adjacent to Boca Chica State Park, has been a work in progress since SpaceX first discussed their plans with the Texas state government in 2011. Groundbreaking on the facility began in 2014. With the dirt continuing to be moved, the Brownsville Herald reports that company plans to conduct its first launch in September 2018.

 

The Texas operation represents yet another piece of Elon Musk’s process of creating a commercial version of NASA’s space operations, including vehicle design and assembly, testing, mission control, launch operations and now ground tracking.

 

Falcon 9 rockets launching out of Boca Chica would fly commercial satellites only. SpaceX will continue to launch to the International Space Station (ISS) from Florida.

 

Since June of 2010, SpaceX has launched its Falcon 9 rocket some 27 times – all but two of those have been from the Cape. The rocket has only encountered a single failure, the 2015 flight of the CRS-7 Dragon spacecraft to the ISS. The Hawthorne, California-based company has greatly increased its operations since that time.

 

SpaceX also has a launch site at Vandenberg Air Force Base located in California. Space Launch Complex 4E (East) has been used twice so far. The NewSpace company is hoping to conduct the first flight of its new “Falcon Heavy” rocket from Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Complex 39A later this year. If everything goes according to plan, SpaceX will have as many as four launch sites spread out across the U.S.

http://www.spaceflightinsider.com/organizations/space-exploration-technologies/spacex-build-new-ground-stations-texas/

 

7384-spacex_falcon_9_boca_chica-juan_die

Photo Credit: Juan Diego Delagarza / SpaceFlight Insider
 

-------------------------

 

original.jpg?w=800&h

 

 

--------------------

 

ULA, SpaceX expected to face-off for next GPS 3 contract 

 

Quote

WASHINGTON – The Air Force formally released a solicitation Aug. 3 for SpaceX or United Launch Alliance to launch the third GPS 3 position, navigation and timing satellite, setting up what is expected to be the first true competition between the two companies for a national security launch contract.

 

In April, SpaceX won an $82.7 million Air Force contract to launch the second GPS 3 satellite aboard its Falcon 9 rocket in May 2018. That contract marked the first of nine launch contracts the Defense Department plans to put out for bid over the next three years.

 

But United Launch Alliance, which for the past decade has launched nearly every U.S. national security satellite, said it did not submit a bid for that contract in part because at the time it did not expect to have an Atlas 5 rocket available for the mission.  The company also cited problems certifying its accounting system and concerns about how the Air Force would weigh price versus reliability, schedule certainty, technical capability and past performance in choosing a launch provider.

 

In essence, SpaceX won the contract by default, although sources told SpaceNews the Hawthorne, California-based company submitted two bids, forcing the government to choose between its offers.

 

Since then, Tory Bruno, ULA’s chief executive, has said he expects the Denver-based company to bid on future competitive missions. Air Force leaders said they met extensively with both companies to discuss a draft solicitation for the mission released in June.

 

“Through this competitive solicitation for GPS 3 launch services, we hope to continue fostering competition in order to promote innovation and reduce cost to the taxpayer while maintaining our laser focus on mission success,” Lt. Gen. Samuel Greaves, the commander of the Air Force’s Space and Missile Systems Center, said in an Aug. 3 press release.

 

The satellite, known as GPS 3-3, is expected to launch in 2019. Bids are due Sept. 19.

 

The GPS 3 mission is the second of nine medium-class launches the Air Force intends to put out for bid by the end of 2018. Of the nine, six are for GPS 3 satellites, all of which are in SpaceX’s wheelhouse and will pose a competitive challenge for ULA.

 

ULA launched the current-generation GPS 2F satellites, 12 in all, and split the work between its Atlas 5 and Delta 4 rockets.

 

In 2012, the Air Force turned down an unsolicited bid from SpaceX to launch the GPS 3 satellites for $79.9 million each. Lockheed Martin Space Systems of Denver is currently under contract to build eight GPS 3 satellites, the first of which is expected to launch as early as spring 2017.

http://spacenews.com/ula-spacex-expected-to-face-off-for-next-gps-3-contract/

 

:)

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DocM

 

 

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DocM

SpaceKSC.com

 

160804_trans1_zpsb4f8r8kd.jpg

 

160804_trans2_zpsoclk044z.jpg

 

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Draggendrop

Here are a few more images of the first stage transporter, not bad for 26 months work after a $37K purchase......

 

L1UmGXF.jpg

Credit Stephen Smith

 

 

13920809_10206795644716470_4751670678216

Credit Anonymous

 

 

If there's a few spare stages hanging around......

 

EAZtE4Nl.jpg

Credit TheBlacktom (reddit, rSpaceX)

image link

 

:)

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DocM

This is the 90 satellite SHERPA launch. The Q4 2017 launch will be the similar Sun Synch Express to SSO.

 

 

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Draggendrop

An Iridium Corporate tweet just got cancelled, but this was the image, in the tweet, of the first sat mounted...

 

kArNfXB.jpg

image link

 

as compared to "test prep"...

 

IRIDIUM_Test_Prep_183_KHarris.jpg

 

:)

 

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DocM

SloMo launch, separation & landing burns reel

 

 

 

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Draggendrop

As per Doc's post...

 

 

 

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DocM

 

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Draggendrop

Just a fun one....

 

Start Back to School With Commercial Crew In Your Backpack!

 

Quote

When you crack open your books for school, keep your place with Commercial Crew Program bookmarks. Download and print them out today!

SpaceX, Boeing and NASA bookmarks....see the main link.

 

https://blogs.nasa.gov/commercialcrew/2016/08/10/start-back-to-school-with-commercial-crew-in-your-backpack/

 

bookmark-spacex-100x300.jpg

 

SpaceX pdf print

 

:)

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DocM

 

New twist in this NSF thread, starting with post 594

 

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=32983.575

 

Summary,

 

We've known they want to eliminate the pad static fires, but now it seems they also want to eliminate the single engine Merlin tests.

 

This would reduce McGregors flow to testing only assembled stages, rather than getting engine group shipments for testing and then sending them back to Hawthorne for assembly.

 

This could only happen if their reject rate is a microbes width from zero, and major iterations are ending.

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Draggendrop

Here are a few links to document progress, at SpaceX HQ, for the S1 display pad...

 

album, 23 days ago

 

album, yesterday

 

check out the rocket shaped bike rack...

ykMN6lx.jpg

 

:)

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DocM
On 7/30/2016 at 5:13 PM, DocM said:

Total fires = 6.5 if you count,

 

McGregor qualification

LC-40 Static Fire

LC-40 Launch

LZ-1 landing (.5)

McGregor refire 1

McGregor refire 2

McGregor refire 3

 

F9-024 is back on the test stand at McGregor, begging for more abuse (Y)

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