Author Topic: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)  (Read 364683 times)

Offline Robotbeat

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1540 on: 08/25/2016 08:24 PM »
Direct GSO insertion of large sats needs expendable performance (and 2nd stage endurance). I know they have said they are working on the endurance, but don't think they have any direct GSO payloads manifested.
I think you underestimate just how powerful Falcon Heavy is even in partially reusable mode. Yes, even for high energy missions...
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Online Roy_H

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1541 on: 08/26/2016 11:42 PM »
I suspect that SpaceX will not quote on any GSO missions until they have the Raptor/methane upper stage operational. I just can't see them committing resources for an interim solution that would only be used for a few flights.
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Online wannamoonbase

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1542 on: 08/27/2016 12:14 AM »
I suspect that SpaceX will not quote on any GSO missions until they have the Raptor/methane upper stage operational. I just can't see them committing resources for an interim solution that would only be used for a few flights.

Well, that all depends on how much they can make on those few flights.

Also, if it can 'bolt on' to a Raptor US then they can jump right into the market with that. 

PS: I'm super excited about the possibility of a Raptor US.
I know they don't need it, but Crossfeed would be super cool.

Online envy887

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1543 on: 08/27/2016 12:53 AM »
Direct GSO insertion of large sats needs expendable performance (and 2nd stage endurance). I know they have said they are working on the endurance, but don't think they have any direct GSO payloads manifested.
I think you underestimate just how powerful Falcon Heavy is even in partially reusable mode. Yes, even for high energy missions...
If they expend the center core, sure. But that's not really compatible with keeping one set of Heavy-specific hardware flying multiple times.

But the customers that would demand direct GSO insertion would probably also want a new launcher and be more than willing to pony up an extra $150 million.

Offline Robotbeat

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1544 on: 08/27/2016 02:29 AM »
I suspect that SpaceX will not quote on any GSO missions until they have the Raptor/methane upper stage operational. I just can't see them committing resources for an interim solution that would only be used for a few flights.
...this depends on whether or not SpaceX will deploy a Raptor-based upper stage for Falcon. That's not entirely certain right now.
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Offline Ronsmytheiii

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1545 on: 08/27/2016 09:25 AM »
I suspect that SpaceX will not quote on any GSO missions until they have the Raptor/methane upper stage operational. I just can't see them committing resources for an interim solution that would only be used for a few flights.
...this depends on whether or not SpaceX will deploy a Raptor-based upper stage for Falcon. That's not entirely certain right now.

Considering the fact that they have an Air Force Contract to do exactly that, I am not sure why they wouldn't:

http://www.parabolicarc.com/2016/01/18/spacex-air-force-funding-infusion-raptor-engine/


Offline mfck

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1546 on: 08/27/2016 09:43 AM »
I suspect that SpaceX will not quote on any GSO missions until they have the Raptor/methane upper stage operational. I just can't see them committing resources for an interim solution that would only be used for a few flights.
...this depends on whether or not SpaceX will deploy a Raptor-based upper stage for Falcon. That's not entirely certain right now.

Considering the fact that they have an Air Force Contract to do exactly that, I am not sure why they wouldn't:

http://www.parabolicarc.com/2016/01/18/spacex-air-force-funding-infusion-raptor-engine/
It's a contract for a prototype engine, not a US

Offline MATTBLAK

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1547 on: 08/27/2016 09:46 AM »
And to think; when in earlier threads I said that the Falcon family was going to get a Raptor powered upper stage, there were some who said it simply wasn't going to happen, or that I didn't know what I was talking about... ;)
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Offline Ronsmytheiii

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1548 on: 08/27/2016 09:52 AM »

It's a contract for a prototype engine, not a US

The engine is pretty much all of the upperstage, stop splitting hairs when it is meaningless

Offline mfck

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1549 on: 08/27/2016 09:59 AM »
It's a contract for a prototype engine, not a US

It is a prototype for an upperstage engine:

Quote
Space Exploration Technologies, Corp. (SpaceX), Hawthorne, California, has been awarded a $33,660,254 other transaction agreement for the development of the Raptor rocket propulsion system prototype for the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) program. This agreement implements Section 1604 of the Fiscal Year 2015 National Defense Authorization Act, which requires the development of a next-generation rocket propulsion system that will transition away from the use of the Russian-supplied RD-180 engine to a domestic alternative for National Security Space launches. An other transaction agreement was used in lieu of a standard procurement contract in order to leverage on-going investment by industry in rocket propulsion systems. This other transaction agreement requires shared cost investment with SpaceX for the development of a prototype of the Raptor engine for the upper stage of the Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy launch vehicles. The locations of performance are NASA Stennis Space Center, Mississippi; Hawthorne, California; and Los Angeles Air Force Base, California. The work is expected to be completed no later than Dec. 31, 2018. Air Force fiscal 2015 research, development, test and evaluation funds in the amount of $33,660,254 are being obligated at the time of award.  SpaceX is contributing $67,320,506 at the time of award. The total potential government investment, including all options, is $61,392,710. The total potential investment by SpaceX, including all options, is $122,785,419. This award is the result of a competitive acquisition with multiple offers received. The Launch Systems Enterprise Directorate, Space and Missile Systems Center, Los Angeles Air Force Base, California is the contracting activity (FA8811-16-9-0001).

So you think SpaceX would design a prototype engine for Falcon 9/Heavy, and immediately shelve it? I can't see them doing that, if the engine is available and its will make money (for their Mars efforts) why would SpaceX not use it? Methane isnt that different from the operating temperatures for the low density LOX, it wont be that hard to design a tank for the engine.

http://www.defense.gov/News/Contracts/Contract-View/Article/642983
It is not obvious, that the business case for such a change in F9/FH closes at this time. Mind you, I am not saying they won't do it, just that the contract is not for a US. On the contrary, I have even made a WAG prediction, here or on one of the other threads, that the new US for FH will be announced 18 months after first commercial FH flight. Got laughed at by Jim.

DoD payloads do not seem to be high priority for SX. They use AF as a disruption amplifier, not as anchor client, imo.
« Last Edit: 08/27/2016 10:00 AM by mfck »

Offline mfck

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1550 on: 08/27/2016 10:02 AM »

It's a contract for a prototype engine, not a US

The engine is pretty much all of the upperstage, stop splitting hairs when it is meaningless
I am not splitting anything. Integrarion, GSE and testing are all going to cost extra for a new stage.
Edit, for clarity: Meaning, building a new US and fielding a new US is not the same, especially when one of the highest stated priorities for SX is launch cadence.
« Last Edit: 08/27/2016 10:10 AM by mfck »

Offline Ronsmytheiii

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1551 on: 08/27/2016 10:11 AM »

It's a contract for a prototype engine, not a US

The engine is pretty much all of the upperstage, stop splitting hairs when it is meaningless
I am not splitting anything. Integrarion, GSE and testing are all going to cost extra for a new stage.

But SpaceX and the Air Force are going to spend at least $67 Million and $33.7 million respectively on an engine that will be shelved? All of the things you listed SpaceX did when they upgraded Falcon 9 for FT, yes it is extra but well less than a new engine.

Offline mfck

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1552 on: 08/27/2016 10:13 AM »



It's a contract for a prototype engine, not a US

The engine is pretty much all of the upperstage, stop splitting hairs when it is meaningless
I am not splitting anything. Integrarion, GSE and testing are all going to cost extra for a new stage.

But SpaceX and the Air Force are going to spend at least $67 Million and $33.7 million respectively on an engine that will be shelved? All of the things you listed SpaceX did when they upgraded Falcon 9 for FT, yes it is extra but well less than a new engine.

It is hardly the same to me, but IANAE. And I have not said a word about shelving. There is this BFS talk, you might have heard.

Online rsdavis9

Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1553 on: 08/27/2016 10:49 AM »
I might have to agree with the fact that the mix of methane and kerosene on the same rocket is going to make it harder for the gse equipment. Waiting for bfs could well be the better choice from methane only gse and not complicating the launch cadence. Launching often is where spacex is really making money. I.E. spreading fixed cost over many launches. DOD really slows them down in this respect.

EDIT: changed gso to gse.
« Last Edit: 08/27/2016 11:02 AM by rsdavis9 »
bob

Offline JBF

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1554 on: 08/27/2016 11:12 AM »

It's a contract for a prototype engine, not a US

The engine is pretty much all of the upperstage, stop splitting hairs when it is meaningless
I am not splitting anything. Integrarion, GSE and testing are all going to cost extra for a new stage.

But SpaceX and the Air Force are going to spend at least $67 Million and $33.7 million respectively on an engine that will be shelved? All of the things you listed SpaceX did when they upgraded Falcon 9 for FT, yes it is extra but well less than a new engine.

To the AF 37mil is chump change.  SpaceX could be doing this just as a chance to get someone else to help pay for raptor development.
"In principle, rocket engines are simple, but thatís the last place rocket engines are ever simple." Jeff Bezos

Offline GORDAP

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1555 on: 08/27/2016 11:19 AM »

It's a contract for a prototype engine, not a US

The engine is pretty much all of the upperstage, stop splitting hairs when it is meaningless
I am not splitting anything. Integrarion, GSE and testing are all going to cost extra for a new stage.

But SpaceX and the Air Force are going to spend at least $67 Million and $33.7 million respectively on an engine that will be shelved? All of the things you listed SpaceX did when they upgraded Falcon 9 for FT, yes it is extra but well less than a new engine.

Ron, you may have missed it, but Musk recently (a month or so back) said that, while it is tempting to now jump into designing a new US for the Falcons based on the Raptor, it would compete for resources with 'the Mars rocket'.  And that they need to get busy on the latter.

So indeed it does look as though they are 'shelving' plans for a Raptor based US for the Falcons (but not for a US Raptor itself).

Online rsdavis9

« Last Edit: 08/27/2016 11:40 AM by rsdavis9 »
bob


Online gongora

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1558 on: 08/29/2016 03:46 PM »
Reminder, you should be posting in Thread 5 now.  Chris was kind enough to not lock the old threads this time so we can still quote them.

Online Lar

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 4)
« Reply #1559 on: 08/29/2016 04:27 PM »
Reminder, you should be posting in Thread 5 now.  Chris was kind enough to not lock the old threads this time so we can still quote them.
Indeed.

I splitmerged the posts over to 5. Next time I may just delete them because I'm super mean that way.
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