Author Topic: Where will BFR be built?  (Read 143895 times)

Offline RotoSequence

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #20 on: 10/03/2017 04:09 PM »
The BFR is meant to point up while being supported from below, so they could probably put it down on its engines and temporarily remove power lines and traffic lights.
« Last Edit: 10/03/2017 04:10 PM by RotoSequence »

Offline envy887

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #21 on: 10/03/2017 04:10 PM »
The BFS as shown has a wingspan of about 13.5 meters, compared to the Shuttle at 23.8 meters.

Yes, but the shuttle itself was crazy difficult to move.  They had to cut down trees and do a lot of other radical things to make it possible, as shown in the video screen-shot below.  I seriously doubt there would be public support for SpaceX to do this on an ongoing basis.

There's a big difference between possible and practical.

The shuttle external tank move was less radical, so some have proposed this as a precedent for moving BFR/BFS, but BFR and BFS are both significantly larger than the shuttle external tank.

Yes, I've seen the video. But it's a lot easier to find a path for a 44 foot wingspan than for 78 feet.

I don't think it's ideal long term, but I believe it's feasible for the first dozen or so vehicles.

Offline kaoru

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #22 on: 10/03/2017 04:20 PM »
Given that Elon said that tooling has already been ordered, this assumes that manufacturing space has been already been allocated/planned for.  Since the majority of the BFR/BFS structure is carbon fibre which I assume the ordered tooling is for, is it possible that where they constructed the 12m test tank be the same place for building BFR/BFS tankage?

Online Dave G

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #23 on: 10/03/2017 04:45 PM »
... is it possible that where they constructed the 12m test tank be the same place for building BFR/BFS tankage?

Watching this video, it seems they built the 12m test tank right next to a sea port.  Anyone know where?



Offline RotoSequence

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #24 on: 10/03/2017 04:51 PM »
Watching this video, it seems they built the 12m test tank right next to a sea port.  Anyone know where?

The 12 meter tank was contracted to Janicki Industries in Sedro-Woolley, Washington. They're a composites layup specialist. SpaceX will have a learning curve building these tanks in-house.

Offline John Alan

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #25 on: 10/03/2017 05:20 PM »
My speculation (we need much more info from SpX to clarify many things)

The "tooling" ordered at this point is to build the BFS (not booster) tank assy... in my opinion...  ;)
IOW the back half of the top stage... to include the 6 Raptor engine mounts...
They REALLY need to build just this... stand it up somewhere with 6 SL Raptors installed and test fire it... ALOT...
Just this... will show if this project has a prayer of going anywhere...

Follow that with a BFS flyable sub orbital test mule... Outer Mold Line at production intent...
Take that somewhere and start doing hops to work out all the landing kinks...
Start with the two center engines and just the header tanks having prop... Grasshopper BFR style...
Install mass simulators where the other 4 Raptors go
Maybe a water tank based mass simulator (easily adjusted) in the nose section...
I'd suggest a small trench in a pad as the takeoff point with a flat landing pad nearby... use the landing legs...
Work toward using just the trenched pad for both TO and Landing... (IOW accurate and correct rotation)
Demo twin AND single engine landings...

Next construct a launch mount that will let you launch BFS with 6 SL Raptors and partial main tanks
It's too heavy w/full tanks to fly on 6 engines)... this may even be the 3rd unit built...
Use this Grasshopper BFR 2.0 to make suborbital hops... land back on the two engine trenched pad
Really fly the crap out this to work out the return from just after reentry... thru flip and powered decent...

NOW... I said all that to point out that this all seems doable building in Hawthorne only...
And even the production BFS's can come from there... Until build volume reaches some level...
Booster... heck no... got to be elsewhere... SL Raptors sure... components sure...
Booster tanks and Booster final assy... no way

So that is the question needs answered here in this thread... where is that Booster plant...
TBD at this point...  ;)
« Last Edit: 10/03/2017 06:46 PM by John Alan »

Offline JBF

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #26 on: 10/03/2017 05:22 PM »
It could also only be the tooling for the engines.
"In principle, rocket engines are simple, but thatís the last place rocket engines are ever simple." Jeff Bezos

Offline Oersted

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #27 on: 10/03/2017 05:28 PM »
Musk built a huge Gigafactory for Tesla. I am sure he has the drive to put the BFR final assembly plant where needed. A lot of sub-assembly and rocket engine production will remain in Hawthorne because Southern California is where you can hire a lot of great engineers.

Offline x15_fan

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #28 on: 10/03/2017 05:33 PM »
For comparison this is how A380s sub-assemblies make it through the French countryside.




Offline Coastal Ron

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #29 on: 10/03/2017 05:50 PM »
Exactly!

folks need to remember that a key SpaceX culture is co-location of R&D with manufacturing.  As someone who ran R&D and put products into manufacturing I have experienced the benefits of co-location and the inefficiencies and developer disconnect with remote manufacturing..  Co-location offers efficient, quick problem resolution, and design in level appreciation of mfg issues by otherwise potentially ivory towerish new product developers.

A manufacturing brother in arms! Not many of us here.

Completely agree. My background is in manufacturing operations, both for new products and sustaining products, and I too have witnessed where being able to have the design engineers walk down to the production floor to address issues has been a big time saver.

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I don't see CA developers moving to Boca or Michoud, no matter how much less expensive the Real Estate.

There is the possibility that they could transition the 9m BFR to remote production facility after it has been proven to be buildable in Hawthorne. But SpaceX would be a large presence no matter where they go, so it would be a long-term commitment for everyone.

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I do remain open to the possibility of SpaceX leasing expensive harbor proximate facilities within easy commute distance of present Hawthorne facilities...

Seems like a good interim solution.
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

Offline deptrai

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #30 on: 10/03/2017 05:59 PM »
It will be built in Hawthorne then transported through the tunnel system he is creating with the Boring Company.  I was there last week and the boring machine was nowhere to be seen.  It hand been sitting in the parking lot and now it has gone underground. 

Offline Coastal Ron

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #31 on: 10/03/2017 06:13 PM »
Shuttle External Tank and BFR/BFS shown approximately to scale below.

That's not the BRF/ITS that SpaceX is building first. They are building the 9m diameter version (~30ft).

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By the way, to transport the shuttle itself, they also had to cut down some trees to make room for the shuttle's wings.  The delta wings on BFS may have the same issue.

And again, they had to close streets in L.A. for 18 hours to transport the shuttle external tank.

Not every street, and not every street on the route at the same time. Plus they were going through an area of L.A. that is more urban - there are more large streets on the route to SpaceX.

I don't think it will be a big issue, and apparently neither does Elon Musk.
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

Offline garcianc

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #32 on: 10/03/2017 06:19 PM »
It will be built in Hawthorne then transported through the tunnel system he is creating with the Boring Company.  I was there last week and the boring machine was nowhere to be seen.  It hand been sitting in the parking lot and now it has gone underground.

I was just about to post the same thing, but decided to check something... the machine that The Boring Co bought is 29ft (~7.9m) in diameter per the following article: https://electrek.co/2017/04/27/elon-musk-tunnel-boring-machine-spacex-first-image/. Once you add the lining, floor, infrastructure, etc. to the tunnel, there won't be room for much more than standard road traffic. They would need a larger diameter machine.

Offline envy887

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #33 on: 10/03/2017 06:29 PM »
Shuttle External Tank and BFR/BFS shown approximately to scale below.

That's not the BRF/ITS that SpaceX is building first. They are building the 9m diameter version (~30ft).

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By the way, to transport the shuttle itself, they also had to cut down some trees to make room for the shuttle's wings.  The delta wings on BFS may have the same issue.

And again, they had to close streets in L.A. for 18 hours to transport the shuttle external tank.

Not every street, and not every street on the route at the same time. Plus they were going through an area of L.A. that is more urban - there are more large streets on the route to SpaceX.

I don't think it will be a big issue, and apparently neither does Elon Musk.

Check the image again, that is the 2017 BFR.

Offline wannamoonbase

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #34 on: 10/03/2017 06:41 PM »
Given that Elon said that tooling has already been ordered, this assumes that manufacturing space has been already been allocated/planned for.  Since the majority of the BFR/BFS structure is carbon fibre which I assume the ordered tooling is for, is it possible that where they constructed the 12m test tank be the same place for building BFR/BFS tankage?

For all we know, the tooling order is for the header tanks or for a test vessel/tank.  Namely the domes or common bulk head.  (I wonder if the header tanks would be about the size needed for a Raptor powered F9 US?)

The over all design won't be developed enough yet for a lot of the BFS.
SpaceX, just a few things planned for 2018: FH, Starlink Prototypes, Block 5, Dragon 2, Increased launch rate.

Online Dave G

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #35 on: 10/03/2017 07:58 PM »
Shuttle External Tank and BFR/BFS shown approximately to scale below.

That's not the BRF/ITS that SpaceX is building first. They are building the 9m diameter version (~30ft).

That's the 9m BFR / BFS version, taken from Musk's latest presentation on September 29, 2017.  Look at the dimensions on the picture. These were all taken from the latest presentation.

I don't think it will be a big issue, and apparently neither does Elon Musk.

Musk is on record saying BFR will be built at the launch site.  See post #1 on this thread for details.

Of course, he could have changed his mind since then, or he may have a phased approach, hence all the speculation on this thread.
« Last Edit: 10/03/2017 08:19 PM by Dave G »

Offline RoboGoofers

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #36 on: 10/03/2017 07:59 PM »
Might they just budget $x millions to buy up problem properties along the route? They throw away $5 million fairings; That kind of money would buy a lot of real estate. Fairings are a necessary expense, but so is getting the rocket to the launch pad.
« Last Edit: 10/03/2017 08:02 PM by RoboGoofers »

Online Dave G

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #37 on: 10/03/2017 08:18 PM »
Might they just budget $x millions to buy up problem properties along the route? They throw away $5 million fairings; That kind of money would buy a lot of real estate. Fairings are a necessary expense, but so is getting the rocket to the launch pad.

SpaceX is all about reducing costs wherever practical.  They wouldn't spend millions on something that wasn't required to achieve their goals.

Also, if I remember correctly, on the last F9 flight they tried to recover the fairing.

Offline Coastal Ron

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #38 on: 10/03/2017 09:49 PM »
That's not the BRF/ITS that SpaceX is building first. They are building the 9m diameter version (~30ft).

That's the 9m BFR / BFS version, taken from Musk's latest presentation on September 29, 2017.  Look at the dimensions on the picture. These were all taken from the latest presentation.

My bad. Apologies all around to you and envy887 who also corrected me. Conversion error on my part I think.  :o

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Musk is on record saying BFR will be built at the launch site.

Musk is also on record saying that they could build the 9m BFR & ITS at their existing factory - which presumes the Hawthorne one.

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Of course, he could have changed his mind since then, or he may have a phased approach, hence all the speculation on this thread.

The 12m diameter BFR & ITS can't be built at their Hawthorne factory, so that obviously is what he was talking about.

For the 9m versions, a guess as to their route from the Hawthorne factory to the location where the Shuttle External Tank was unloaded from an ocean-going barge would be:

1. Start at the SpaceX factory, exiting (I think) onto Jack Northrop Blvd going East
2. Turn left onto Crenshaw Blvd going North
3. Turn left onto W 120th Street going West
4. Turn right onto Hawthorne Blvd going North, which turns into South La Brea Ave
5. Turn left onto E Arbor Vitae Street, which turns into Westchester Parkway
* Now the BRF & ITS will be using part of the same route the Shuttle ET used, just in reverse
6. Turn right onto Loyola Blvd
7. Turn left onto Lincoln Blvd
8. Turn right onto Culver Blvd
9. Turn left onto CA-90 - going against the normal direction of traffic
10. Turn left onto Mindanao Way
11. Turn left onto Lincoln Blvd
12. Turn right onto Fiji Way
13. End at the CruiseMDR.com Dock 55 Landing

Lines and signs moved, and some tree trimming may be needed, but it looks doable.
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

Online docmordrid

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Re: Where will BFR be built?
« Reply #39 on: 10/03/2017 11:39 PM »
Watching this video, it seems they built the 12m test tank right next to a sea port.  Anyone know where?

The 12 meter tank was contracted to Janicki Industries in Sedro-Woolley, Washington. They're a composites layup specialist. SpaceX will have a learning curve building these tanks in-house.

Maybe not,

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