Author Topic: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3  (Read 220137 times)

Offline Llian Rhydderch

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #40 on: 10/19/2014 06:50 PM »
I rode my motorcycle out to McGregor  yesterday.  There was a booster on the test stand, nothing on the launch pad except a couple of guys wandering around.

I did notice that new white tank of something has been installed near the launch pad.

No sign of the big red crane.

More images here.

I love it, JimNtexas!  Our very own Kremlinologist McGregorSpaceXologist.  ;D
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Offline IslandPlaya

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #41 on: 10/19/2014 10:11 PM »
I rode my motorcycle out to McGregor  yesterday.  There was a booster on the test stand, nothing on the launch pad except a couple of guys wandering around.

I did notice that new white tank of something has been installed near the launch pad.

No sign of the big red crane.

More images here.
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Offline JimNtexas

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #42 on: 10/20/2014 01:44 AM »
I'm glad you like the updates.

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Offline llanitedave

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #43 on: 10/20/2014 03:34 AM »
Is that a pile of debris of some sort in front of the water tower?
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Offline MP99

OTOH, using a TEL is what they know and they've built at least three already (original F9 and two FH capable for Vandy and KSC). Maybe four if McGregor has one. Test like you fly.

I was assuming a TE (can you call it TEL if no "Launch"? :-) )
>

ISTM the difference is more a distinction. You still need the T and E, plus many things for L are needed for tests anyhow: umbilicals, data lines, platform + hold-downs, stage clamp etc.  Perhaps relocated, but still.
Thanks - makes good sense. "L" for the services, rather than anything actually lifting off.

Cheers, Martin

Online Lars-J

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #45 on: 10/20/2014 07:13 AM »
Is that a pile of debris of some sort in front of the water tower?

Yes, looks like pieces of the F9R-Dev1. Do you have any closeups of that pad area, Jim?

Offline JimNtexas

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #46 on: 10/20/2014 05:22 PM »
Is that a pile of debris of some sort in front of the water tower?

It looks that way, doesn't it. 

There is a literal junkyard between the launch pad and the main facility buildings that has a lot of what appears to be old tankage, sheet metal, and miscellaneous junk. 

Offline Prober

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #47 on: 10/20/2014 06:46 PM »
Is that a pile of debris of some sort in front of the water tower?

Yes, looks like pieces of the F9R-Dev1. Do you have any closeups of that pad area, Jim?

flight abort tankage?
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Offline MTom

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #48 on: 10/20/2014 07:06 PM »
Is that a pile of debris of some sort in front of the water tower?

It looks that way, doesn't it. 

There is a literal junkyard between the launch pad and the main facility buildings that has a lot of what appears to be old tankage, sheet metal, and miscellaneous junk.

There it is, an aerial photo from this summer:
http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=32202.msg1218016#msg1218016
« Last Edit: 10/20/2014 07:08 PM by MTom »

Online Lars-J

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #49 on: 10/20/2014 07:44 PM »
Is that a pile of debris of some sort in front of the water tower?

It looks that way, doesn't it. 

There is a literal junkyard between the launch pad and the main facility buildings that has a lot of what appears to be old tankage, sheet metal, and miscellaneous junk.

There it is, an aerial photo from this summer:
http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=32202.msg1218016#msg1218016

That's not the junk I was referring to, and that area is not visible from JimNTexas' photo. I'm referring to the pieces on the Grasshopper pad itself. Just right of the F9R-Dev1 launch mount:

Online getitdoneinspace

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #50 on: 10/22/2014 01:16 PM »
According to this article from Parabolicarc
http://www.parabolicarc.com/2014/10/21/mexico-legislators-spaceport-america-finances/#sthash.JDFpti1H.dpuf
the New Mexico legislators spent Monday in Las Cruces reviewing the finances of Space America and one of the key points from their review included "SpaceX is about five months from being able to conduct flight tests of its reusable Falcon 9 vehicle at the spaceport."

That puts a start to F9R-Dev2 flights in New Mexico around March. Assuming a test flight in McGregor is required before sending the stage to New Mexico perhaps we may see F9R-Dev2 come to McGregor over the winter months.

Offline MTom

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #51 on: 10/22/2014 06:58 PM »
That's not the junk I was referring to, and that area is not visible from JimNTexas' photo. I'm referring to the pieces on the Grasshopper pad itself. Just right of the F9R-Dev1 launch mount:

Sorry, I understood your question as you ask about the first photo from Jim.  :-[

Offline mcoconnor

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #52 on: 12/13/2014 03:24 PM »
Looks like SpaceX is planning to massively expand their McGregor operation.  They plan to add 300 new full time jobs (pending an almost-certain approval of incentives from local government), more than doubling the size of their Texas workforce.

http://www.wacotrib.com/news/business/spacex-expansion-could-add-jobs-locally/article_a805e495-09ed-5fb0-9b9d-95b038d4cbfc.html

Maybe this means an expansion in the rate of testing due to more heavies in the pipeline?  Or maybe anticipating rehab and checkout for used stages?

Offline Avron

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #53 on: 12/13/2014 03:43 PM »
Looks like SpaceX is planning to massively expand their McGregor operation.  They plan to add 300 new full time jobs (pending an almost-certain approval of incentives from local government), more than doubling the size of their Texas workforce.

http://www.wacotrib.com/news/business/spacex-expansion-could-add-jobs-locally/article_a805e495-09ed-5fb0-9b9d-95b038d4cbfc.html

Maybe this means an expansion in the rate of testing due to more heavies in the pipeline?  Or maybe anticipating rehab and checkout for used stages?

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Online JBF

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #54 on: 12/13/2014 07:20 PM »
No wounder they need a farmer,
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Offline wannamoonbase

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #55 on: 12/13/2014 07:23 PM »
300 people is a lot of jobs and 4800 acres is a lot of land..

Maybe they are going to fabricate/assemble Dragon v2 in Texas.
« Last Edit: 12/13/2014 07:26 PM by wannamoonbase »
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Offline oiorionsbelt

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #56 on: 12/13/2014 07:23 PM »
What about Raptor testing? it's likely that will be done at McGregor also.

Offline Prober

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #57 on: 12/13/2014 07:26 PM »
Maybe this means an expansion in the rate of testing due to more heavies in the pipeline?  Or maybe anticipating rehab and checkout for used stages?

think a sec on what you said; that would negate the claimed "cost savings" making a new small army.
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Offline robertross

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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #58 on: 12/13/2014 10:14 PM »


It would make sense. It looks like they'll just be able to use a simplified strong-back to drive a F9/FH up to the new stand, erect it, tank it up and start the test. (no crane needed to life a stage high)

I have thought of a kind of strong-back or TE too. But I am not sure that a crane will not be cheaper to operate. Maybe a Heavy will need one though. That would make the operation even more launch pad like. They would need the full hydraulics to erect it.

Is that necessarily true re the hydraulics?

It would seem to be simpler to have a winch from somewhere up on the test stand to pull the TE vertical. ISTM they avoid this on the launch pad because they don't have a fixed structure which could house the winch. (Or the winch could be in a protected place on the ground, with the cable trained through a pulley up on the stand.)

It's not like the launch pad, where the hydraulics are required to retract the TEL shortly before launch.

Think of it as a crane integrated into the stand.

Cheers, Martin

The problem with that is if the cable should fail, as it would be in tension. For hydraulics, the cylincers are in compression, and there are lond control valves to lock the cylindrs if a hose should fail. And if the worst should happen, they would still provide some amount of slowing of the load.
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Re: SpaceX McGregor Testing Updates and Discussion Thread 3
« Reply #59 on: 12/14/2014 08:48 AM »
Looks like SpaceX is planning to massively expand their McGregor operation.  They plan to add 300 new full time jobs (pending an almost-certain approval of incentives from local government), more than doubling the size of their Texas workforce.

http://www.wacotrib.com/news/business/spacex-expansion-could-add-jobs-locally/article_a805e495-09ed-5fb0-9b9d-95b038d4cbfc.html

Maybe this means an expansion in the rate of testing due to more heavies in the pipeline?  Or maybe anticipating rehab and checkout for used stages?

Possibly also related to delays with Spaceport America?  Though, I can't imagine much of a test ceiling expansion, so maybe not.  I wrote that before actually reading the article.  :-[  The labor force increase is projected for being finished "by Dec. 31, 2018".  Probably not related to Spaceport America.
« Last Edit: 12/14/2014 08:52 AM by deruch »
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