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SpaceX updates (Grasshopper RLV)

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Reacon    135

Thanks for these updates.

We're reading. Just many of us don't have anything worthwhile to say.

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DocM    16,812

Notes from Elon Musk's keynote address before the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) conference yesterday -

  • Super high efficiency staged combustion engine to be announced later in the year.

(NOTE: SpaceX bought the tech for Rocketdyne's RS-84 (spec PDF....) staged combustion / re-usable kerosene engine a while back. If they build an engine based on that tech it could well be the Merlin 2 BFR [big f***ing rocket], an engine even larger than the F1 used on the legendary Saturn V Moon rocket. SpaceX designs based on it are spec'ed at up to 160 metric tons to orbit - 3x the loft of Falcon Heavy)

  • Looking at systems to deliver 50 metric tons to Mars, fully reusable. Nothing fleshed out yet though.

(yup - Merlin 2)
  • Discussed progress in human rating of Dragon, escape systems and vertical landing.
  • Electrical propulsion a good idea for trip to Mars, needs to have enough thrust to matter and energy efficient.

(obviously VASIMR)

  • Crossfeed on Falcon Heavy useful for missions with heavy payloads, will probably be disabled for smaller payloads.

(crossfeed = pumping fuel/LOX from the outboard stages into the core stage so that when they separate the core has full tanks and can continue higher before the 2nd stage lights)
  • In discussion with NASA about missions beyond Pluto, would probably use crossfeed for that.

(beyond PLUTO ?!? Must be plans to explore the Kuiper belt and Oort cloud, maybe the minor planets beyond Pluto.)

  • Permanent Mars / Earth ferries may have a place in the long term. Initial thoughts are towards a one mission infrastructure.
  • Funding for Mars would probably be a combination of government and private. Would make one hell of an x-prize!
  • Expects to build 400 engines per year.
  • Falcon Heavy is 20 metric tons to Geostationary Transfer Orbit.

(20 metric tons? That's HUGE)

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DocM    16,812

News on the SpaceX front.

Not official so exact numbers may change after the tests, but very close. This speedup is possible because of a hiring spurt - they're between 1,400 and 1,500 souls now and still growing. Seems resume's from engineers are staked up like cord wood, but they're picky.

1) Merlin 2 is a go and under active development. It will have a thrust of about 1,000,000 lb-ft (4,448,500 Newtons) - similar to the Rocketdyne RS-84 (which they have the rights to) and about 2.5x the thrust of the Space Shuttle Main Engine (!). Quite likely it'll be lighter, cheaper to build and simpler than either of those. Very possible it'll be an advanced staged combustion engine.

2) the Raptor liquid hydrogen/LOX second stage is also in active development. No details on it yet other than it'll be a staged combustion engine, but it would be used for high energy destinations like geostationary orbits, Mars, heavier lunar or asteroid missions..

3) a new variant of Falcon 9 is in the works that will replace the Merlin 1C engine cluster and MVac 2nd stage engine with the Merlin 2 and the Raptor. Very likely it'll also get higher capacity tanks up and down. A beast.

4) the Merlin 1C Block II engine is getting replaced with the Merlin 1D, which is now undergoing tests at their McGregor, Texas test site. Word is it's exceeding its goals.

This is a huge upgrade in that its weight has been reduced 33%, its part count drastically reduced (ex: down to a single servo from 13) and the whole thing made into a production line engine. All this and a major performance update too (see below)

The throttleability means that Falcon 9 will no longer have to shut down 2 of its 9 engines at maximum dynamic pressure (Max-Q), but simply ease up on the gas. This will also mean a very, very smooth ride for astronauts in the Dragon.

5) a new MVac 2nd stage engine is also in the works based on the new Merlin 1D for use in the Falcon Heavy

6) if a Merlin 2 version of Falcon Heavy would be built or if they'll go straight to a larger diameter core like Falcon X or Falcon XX is an open question.

1Cv1D.jpg

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DocM    16,812

Just found out that the Merlin 1D's throw weight ratio of 160:1 breaks the record of 137:1 formerly held by the Russian NK-33 engine. The boys & girls at SpaceX are raising eyebrows among the propulsion jockeys.

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DocM    16,812

For those who like diagrams below is a leaked one that looks to be for the Raptor liquid hydrogen 2nd stage engine -

RaptorDiagram800.jpg

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neoadorable    405

sorry for being away for a while and many thanks for the updates Doc! as usual these give us great hope, and Musk and NASA are clearly getting into the swing of things. this 2018 mission to Mars is looking mighty nice...i told you, we'll have a manned mission by 2020 at this rate! and talk of exploring beyond Pluto is always exciting! thanks again man.

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DocM    16,812

Got another neat tidbit -

Virtually every rocket engine maker takes a big slug of metal, machines the thrust chamber then slowly plates the inside with nickle.

What does SpaceX introduce with the Merlin 1D? Explosive hydroforming. They take a cylinder of alloy, embed it in a thick sludge with a mold and set off an explosive which forms it in a millisecond.

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neufuse    4,262

Got another neat tidbit -

Virtually every rocket engine maker takes a big slug of metal, machines the thrust chamber then slowly plates the inside with nickle.

What does SpaceX introduce with the Merlin 1D? Explosive hydroforming. They take a cylinder of alloy, embed it in a thick sludge with a mold and set off an explosive which forms it in a millisecond.

ok, that's just cool, after seeing the mythbusters make diamond in a similar way, by explosive forces, it makes forming stuff like that just seem neat, wish they had video of it

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DocM    16,812

MAJOR UPDATE

SPACEX | COMMERCIAL CREW DEVELOPMENT

August 15, 2011

Over the last several months, SpaceX has been hard at work preparing for our next flight ? a mission designed to demonstrate that a privately-developed space transportation system can deliver cargo to and from the International Space Station (ISS). NASA has given us a Nov. 30, 2011 launch date, which should be followed nine days later by Dragon berthing at the ISS.

NASA has agreed in principle to allow SpaceX to combine all of the tests and demonstration activities that we originally proposed as two separate missions (COTS Demo 2 and COTS Demo 3) into a single mission. Furthermore, SpaceX plans to carry additional payloads aboard the Falcon 9?s second stage which will deploy after Dragon separates and is well on its way to the ISS. NASA will grant formal approval for the combined COTS missions pending resolution of any potential risks associated with these secondary payloads. Our team continues to work closely with NASA to resolve all questions and concerns.

This next mission represents a huge milestone not only for SpaceX, but also for NASA and the US space program. When the astronauts stationed on the ISS open the hatch and enter the Dragon spacecraft for the first time, it will mark the beginning of a new era in space travel.

Through continued private-public partnerships like the one that helped develop the Falcon 9 and Dragon system, commercial companies will transform the way we access space. Together, government and the private sector can simultaneously increase the reliability, safety and frequency of space travel, while greatly reducing the costs.

The update below highlights our recent progress towards the combined C2/C3 mission and missions beyond. From the 1,500 team members here at SpaceX, thank you for your continued support, and for joining us in this exciting, vital adventure.

20110815-001.jpg

This week, we successfully completed a wet dress rehearsal (WDR) for the Falcon 9 Flight 3 launch vehicle at Space Launch Complex 40, Cape Canaveral, Florida. The WDR is a significant test during which we load propellant into the vehicle and perform all operations just as we would on launch day right down to T-1 seconds, at which point we abort and detank the propellant.

Since our last flight, we have made significant upgrades to the launch pad to streamline the countdown. For example, we installed new liquid oxygen (LOX) pumps that reduced our previous loading time from 90 minutes to under 30. Improvements like this are getting us closer to our long term goal of Falcon 9 going from hangar to liftoff in under an hour. This is no easy task for a vehicle with about the same takeoff weight as a fully loaded Boeing 747, but if a 747 can do it reliably day after day, then Falcon 9 can too.

20110815-002.jpg

In a SpaceX clean room in Hawthorne (Los Angeles) California, technicians prepare the Dragon spacecraft for thermal vacuum chamber testing. The open bays will hold the parachutes. NASA has given us a launch date of Nov 30, 2011 for Falcon 9 Flight 3, which will send a Dragon spacecraft to the International Space Station (ISS) as part of NASA?s Commercial Orbital Transportation Services program.

20110815-003.jpg

Also in Hawthorne, we have conducted separation tests of the Dragon trunk from the Falcon 9 second stage. Release mechanisms hold the trunk (top, with solar panel covers on left and right sides) to the stage (bottom). When activated, springs on the Falcon 9 push against the Dragon trunk. The trunk separates and the test fixture?s counterbalance system raises the spacecraft up and away.

20110815-004.jpg

In the Hawthorne factory high bay, we tested the Dragon solar array rotary actuator by hanging the full array from the ceiling. The actuator (top center) turns the entire array. In flight, the solar panels will track the sun for maximum energy capture.

20110815-005.jpg

Upper Left: First stage tank, with domes and barrels for the second stage. Upper Right: All nine Merlin engines have been individually tested in Texas and then returned to California for integration into the thrust assembly. Lower Left: Composite interstage structure that joins the stages. Lower Right: The pressure vessel for the CRS-1 Dragon spacecraft has 10 cubic meters (350 cu ft) of interior volume. Photos: Roger Gilbertson / SpaceX

We are well into production with all parts (shown above) for the following launch, Falcon 9 Flight 4 and its Dragon CRS-1 spacecraft, which should be the first commercial cargo resupply mission under NASA Commercial Resupply Services (CRS) program. Significant additional tooling and automation with be added to the factory, as we build towards the capability of producing a Falcon 9 first stage or Falcon Heavy side booster every week and an upper stage every two weeks. Depending on demand, Dragon production is planned for a rate of one every six to eight weeks.

20110815-006.jpg

Demolition work continues at Space Launch Complex 4 East, our new launch site at Vandenberg Air Force Base on the central coast of California. Recently, the crew dropped the big ?hammerhead? overhanging structure from the legacy Titan IV Mobile Service Tower (sequence above). Removing the tower is a major step in upgrading the pad for Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy launches. We are targeting late 2012 to bring Falcon Heavy to Vandenberg for vehicle to pad integration tests and 2013 for liftoff. Falcon Heavy will be the most powerful rocket in the world.

Stay tuned for more updates on the combined COTS-2 and COTS-3 mission to the ISS, slated for launch on Nov 30, 2011.

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DocM    16,812

Did a crop/enhancement of the Trunk / solar power module image to bring those new solar panel covers out of the shadows a bit. Definitely a major change to the mold line, probably to accommodate larger solar panels and maximize internal cargo volume.

post-347280-0-57532400-1313446526.jpg

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neoadorable    405

awesome pics Doc, thanks!

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DocM    16,812

MSNBC Cosmic Log story as a lead-in to a whole series on new technologies

Link.....

The interesting part are quotes from an upcoming interview with Musk about their proposed new spaceport. Previously we had rumors centered around a Texas location, but now it sounds like other locations are also under consideration; another location in Florida, Puerto Rico (a US territory so no ITAR export control issues), Hawaii and un-named others.

Another base ... in Texas?

Musk has already said that SpaceX is thinking about establishing an additional base for launching Falcon rockets, to supplement its facilities at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida and the pad that's currently being renovated at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The Vandenberg pad is planned as the home base for SpaceX's Falcon Heavy rocket, which is designed to go after the Air Force's satellite launch business.

Last month, local officials in Texas hinted that SpaceX was ready to invest up to $50 million in the Gulf Coast Regional Spaceport, south of Houston. Musk told me that he hadn't yet decided where the third base would be located, but he made it sound as if he was firmly set on expanding operations. He also explained why an extra space base was on SpaceX's agenda:

"We have our main launch facility, which is Cape Canaveral in Florida. Then we are in the process of developing our second launch facility, which is Vandenberg in California. And we do intend to develop a third launch facility. Texas is one of the possible states. But we're also looking at a number of other locations: Puerto Rico, potentially another location in Florida, potentially Hawaii. And there are a few other locations that could work. So we're trying to make the right decision for the long term.

"The third launch site would open early, in perhaps three or four years. So we want to make sure we make the right decision. But we do think we need three launch sites in order to handle all of the launch demand that we have been able to get. ...

"It would be a purely commercial launch site, whereas Cape Canaveral and Vandenberg are actually Air Force bases ? in the case of Cape Canaveral, it's sort of a joint NASA-Air Force activity. So it makes sense to have NASA and Defense Department launches occur from Cape Canaveral and Vandenberg, but then probably shift most of our commercial launches to a purely commercial launch site that's really aimed at being the best customer for a commercial launch provider. Just as there are Air Force bases and commercial airports ... there's some logic to separation."

So at a time when a lot of folks are wondering whether America's aerospace industry is heading toward atrophy, Musk is bullish about his company's future. SpaceX's work force has already risen to 1,500 employees, and that's just one company. Other new players in the spaceflight industry, such as Sierra Nevada Corp. and AdamWorks, are talking about expansion as well.

In the coming weeks, we'll be presenting a package of videos and stories about the future of spaceflight as part of msnbc.com's "Future of Technology" special report. What you're reading today is just a little taste from my wide-ranging interview with Musk. We also talked about his Red Planet ambitions, his perspectives on electric cars and other technological frontiers, and how he manages to wedge in a personal life as well. Stay tuned for much more to come, not only from Musk, but also from other leading figures in the spaceflight revolution.

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DocM    16,812

Working on the Dragon & Trunk in prep for the C2/C3 flight in November - (BIG pic)

dragonsden2.jpg

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guru    323

Thanks for these updates.

We're reading. Just many of us don't have anything worthwhile to say.

+1

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DocM    16,812

Explaining the big pic -

The lithium-aluminum segments at bottom left are friction stir welded (FSW - top left) into ring segments, from which the Falcon 9 monocoque tankage is assembled - again using FSW. This segmentation lets them customize fuel/oxidizer volumes if necessary for higher energy missions - just add rings and move the bulkheads, which are also FSW'd into place. This will be done for the F9 Block II and Falcon Heavy to accommodate the higher fuel/oxidizer volumes needed by the new Merlin 1D engines.

C2/C3 should leave for KSC within 2-3 weeks for integration into the Falcon 9 launcher.

SpaceX has 7 Dragons in various stages of completion, and are preparing to test the Super Draco launch escape/propulsive landing engines at the White Sands Test Facility near Las Cruces, New Mexico soon. 8 of these will be integrated into the Dragon's engineering bay where the other thrusters are located.

There is some debate of the Super Draco will use the typical hypergolic bi-propellant (a toxic brew: monomethylhydrazine and nitrogen tetroxide) used for the Draco maneuvering thrusters or if they'll switch everything to NOFBx - a propitiatory mono-propellant (1 fluid) by Firestar Technologies.

Some think they'll go with the existing hypergolic system and move to NOFBx much later, some think they'll make the jump with the first installation of Super Draco. Either way, NOFBx gets tested on an ISS experimental platform in 2012 with everyone including SpaceX, Boeing, NASA etc. etc. crossing their fingers.

Firestar has former SpaceX people in its management.

NOBFx = Nitrous Oxide Fuel Blend x, a mix of nitrous oxide with a fuel and blending agents in various proportions (the "x") according to the mission. By storing both oxidizer and fuel in a stabilized mix it simplifies the plumbing considerably and it's not anywhere near as toxic as hypergolics. It also delivers a higher specific impulse (more "MPG") than hypergolics.

NOFBx is very revolutionary as it isn't cryogenic, doesn't require a fuel pump or compressed gas to move it (self-pressurizing), non-toxic, easily made, and it can fuel most any internal combustion engine; rocket, Wankle, gas turbine, whatever, with no external air supply.

With NOFBx as the fuel and a few intake system mods, you could run a Chevy small block on the Moon.

Firestar Technologies....

NOFBx American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics 2011 presentation (PDF)....

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DocM    16,812

Elon Musk takes us on tours

The first few tours were filmed before the F9 launches of 2010, but they give a good insight as to the massive operation at the SpaceX Hawthorne, California facility. Also note that they have numerous other buildings around this one, which at one time was used to build Boeing 747's. There are also video tours of the McGregor, Texas test facility and a tour of the launch site at KSC LC-40 earlier this year.

Hawthorne Offices

Inspection & Simulation

Engines

Falcon 1, Falcon 9 and Dragon

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DocM    16,812

Continuing....

Launch Complex 40, Cape Canaveral

McGregor, Texas test site

2011 tour - Falcon 9 integration

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DocM    16,812

A tale of 8 Dragons -

dragon1.jpg

The first Dragon was this engineering model, which is now being used to test crew accommodations for the 2014 manned mission.

dragon2.jpg

The second Dragon was used to test the parachute system and recovery.

dragon3.jpg

The third Dragon made history in December, 2010 when it became the first commercial spacecraft to reach orbit and return safely to Earth. The discoloration is caused by charred particles of the PICA-X heat shield being deposited on the side panels. These can be refinished or replaced as necessary so the same Dragon can fly again.

dragon4.jpg

The fourth Dragon is being prepared for launch in November and berthing at the ISS.

dragon5.jpg

The fifth Dragon is currently under construction and is slated to perform the first of 12 ISS resupply missions.

dragon6.jpg

The sixth Dragon undergoing circumferential welding. Currently producing a Dragon every 3 months they plan on accelerating to one every 6 - 8 weeks.

dragon7.jpg

The seventh Dragon currently sits in pieces at the Hawthorne, California factory. These pieces will become the 3rd ISS resupply mission.

dragon8.jpg

The eighth Dragon pressure hull sits in pieces, waiting to be built. Several other Dragons are in this stage of construction.

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former1    27

Awesome thanks alot for the updates DocM it's really interesting stuff! You don't by chance work for them do you??

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neoadorable    405

yeah i suspect Doc is a silent partner with Musk :whistle: anyway, thanks a lot for the really interesting videos, quite informative and Elon is a cool guy for sure!

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DocM    16,812

Just a side note of interest;

In the movie Iron Man 2 the factory scenes were shot at SpaceX Hawthorne, and part of the characterization of Tony Stark was also based on Musk.

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DocM    16,812

More pix....

This mission will have one of those stretched 2nd stages I talked about, this to let 2 ORBCOMM satellites hitch a ride.

DragonC2-2nd stage (stretched).jpg

One of the 2 solar arrays - note the sun-tracking connector.

DragonC2-solar array + connector.jpg

PCBM berthing adapter (PCBM = Passive Common Berthing Mechanism). This is what connects Dragon to the ISS.

DragonC2-PCBM berthing adapter.jpg

Final assembly of the Dragon to the heat shield structure.

DragonC2-final assembly.jpg

Installing a cargo rack.

DragonC2-cargo rack.jpg

Testing the fit of the Dragon-Trunk claw that carries cooling fluids to/from the thermal radiators in the trunk and power from the solar arrays.

DragonC2-launch tower claw test.jpg

Mating the Dragon to the cargo trunk. Upper insulation panels off. Note the claw.

DragonC2-Trunk.jpg

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neoadorable    405

watched all the videos and now really like Elon, he's so soft spoken, i like his style.

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DocM    16,812

A bit from the USAF office at Vandenberg AFB on demo of SLC-4E's Titan IV tower in preparation for the Falcon Heavy/Falcon 9 "clean pad."

?

MAKING WAY FOR A NEW ERA : Old Titan launch pad being demolished

by 30th Space Wing (Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.) on Wednesday, August 17, 2011 at 6:43am

NORA K. WALLACE, NEWS-PRESS STAFF WRITER

August 17, 2011 5:19 AM

?

One of Vandenberg Air Force Base's most fabled landmarks -- an aerospace icon with a Cold War history -- is quickly disappearing from the skyline of the classified military base.?

The almost half-century old Space Launch Complex 4-East, a gigantic tower on the southwest coast of Vandenberg and easily visible from throughout the Lompoc Valley, is rapidly being removed to make way for Space Exploration Technology's new Falcon Heavy, a 22-story-tall booster considered the world's most powerful private rocket.?

Space Launch Complex 4-East, colloquially called "Slick-4," and its adjacent pad, SLC 4-West, were the site for scores of critical military space launches from the mid-1960s to 2005. The more than 300-foot-tall launch pad, or mobile service tower, and its adjacent 200-foot-tall umbilical tower, are quickly being dismantled by a crew of about two dozen demolition employees from Standard Industries in Ventura.?

Space X is working on an accelerated schedule to ready the property for the launch of its new rocket in early 2013, said Lee Rosen, a former Air Force officer who is now the company's Vandenberg site director.?

Earlier this month, crews removed the "hammerhead" of the mobile service tower -- essentially the overhang section located at the top of the inverted L-shaped building.?

?

That really changed the skyline of Vandenberg," said Mr. Rosen, noting that when the metal section fell several hundred feet to the ground, it caused a tremor.?

Some 6,000 tons -- or 12 million pounds -- of scrap metal and debris are being removed, explained Nort Colborn, site superintendent for Standard Industries. Demolition crews must break down the large steel segments into small loads that can easily be lifted into trash bins.?

There is a key financial reason Space X is not simply blowing up the tower.?

"What we really want to preserve are the monstrous flame ducts," Mr. Rosen said of the concrete funnels for the rocket's exhaust during lift-off. "There are hundreds of thousands of yards of concrete and rebar. If we bring the tower down explosively, it would potentially crush those flame ducts. We want to preserve those."?

Standard Industries will sell the scrap from the towers, while Space X is endeavoring to re-use and recycle as much of the equipment as possible for use in the Falcon program.?

At the remote site, the scene is akin to something out of a post-apocalyptic "Mad Max" type movie. Heavily clothed and hard-hatted men cut aerospace material with welding torches. Like peels stripped from an orange, thin slices of metal sheets plummet downward from the mid-section of the heavily-rusted pad, fluttering to land atop a jumbled stack of twisted metal, plastic and steel.?

About 20 percent of the total tonnage has been removed since May, Mr. Colborn said.?

"It's a time-consuming job," Mr. Colborn said, a walkie-talkie close at hand. "It's challenging in ways and different from other jobs. It's a lot more material to move and it's a lot more difficult to process."?

The height of the mobile service tower -- 30 stories -- is part of the problem. The demolition company has limited access to cranes that are big enough to move the heavy steel sections or to reach to the elevation needed.?

"It's considered a once-in-a-lifetime deal for many of these guys," Mr. Colborn said of the job. "Many of them are seasoned. Even for them, it's an exciting experience. They're motivated. This is a spectacular job. No doubt about it."?

Space Launch Complex 4-East was built in 1961 for the military's Atlas/Agena rocket, which first flew in 1964, carrying a classified spy satellite to orbit. Later, the Air Force used the pad to?boost Titan 3D, Titan 34D and Titan 4 rockets into orbit.?

In all, there were 68 launches from SLC-4 East from 1964 until the final Titan 4 launch in October 2005, which drew more than 4,000 spectators.?

The pad was the site of one of Vandenberg's more famous disasters -- eight seconds after liftoff on April 18, 1986, a Titan 34D exploded, destroying a spy satellite and causing widespread damage at both pads. The explosion, which sent a massive plume of toxic propellant over the area, took place just four months after the destruction of the space shuttle Challenger.?

The illustrious military history is not lost on Mr. Rosen, a former Air Force colonel and commander at Cape Canaveral. He's had a number of old friends who worked on the Titan program call him, saying "Grab me some bolts, just to remember her by."?

Space X allowed some local former Titan workers to visit SLC-4 before the heavy demolition began. They were given permission to walk through and take a few souvenirs. Jay Prichard, curator of Vandenberg's Space and Missile Heritage Center, was also allowed remnants.?

"We were walking through some rooms. There was no power," Mr. Rosen said of a recent visit. "I could feel the ghosts of Titans past."?

Still, he said, he feels a sense of optimism about the future of the launch pad. In essentially the same footprint, Space X will "get to launch the future of Air Force, NRO (National Reconnaissance Office) and commercial payloads."?

Elon Musk, owner of the Hawthorne-based Space X, said recently that he plans to employ as many as 1,000 people at Vandenberg and will invest an estimated $20 to $30 million in the next two years for the Falcon Heavy program.?

Mr. Musk said ongoing financial investment of $5 to $10 million will be made annually for upgrades and enhancements at the new launch pad.?

"An opportunity like this doesn't come around very often," Mr. Rosen said. "I feel so lucky to be a part of a historic event. I really believe we're doing the right thing to bring a new launch capability" to the military and commercial users.?

The new Falcon launch pad will not have the same physical look as the workhorse military pads. Instead, it will be more of a "launch stand," with minimal infrastructure. Work will begin in early October on a new 30,000-square-foot integration and processing hangar, which will house the Falcon while it is readied for liftoff.?

Nearby, a Texas company will install a 350,000-gallon liquid oxygen tank system.?

The Falcon's Launch Control Center will be housed at Vandenberg's former Health and Wellness Center, once meant to house astronauts for the scuttled West Coast space shuttle program.?

As heavy fog rolled in and out of the site Tuesday, Mr. Rosen looked at the pad that should be completely gone by the end of November.?

"That old tower wants to talk," he said looking skyward. "She served well, and she'll get to serve again."

4e4ca968371ba.image.jpg

228931_10150301706489897_95781119896_7546613_7892288_n.jpg

4e4ca968371ba.image.jpg

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DocM    16,812

Higher res looks at a crew Dragon landing, a landed Dragon, and the Mars base concept (a NASA hab) with the Dragons Nest and a Dragon-derived orbit-return vehicle.

post-347280-0-56266700-1314951950.jpg

post-347280-0-96105300-1314951958.jpg

post-347280-0-48992600-1314951972.jpg

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