Author Topic: Debris recovered off Isles of Scilly may be from Cape Canaveral launch  (Read 18633 times)

Online jacqmans

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Not sure what to make of this....


Debris recovered off Isles of Scilly may be from Cape Canaveral launch

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2015/nov/26/debris-recovered-off-isles-of-scilly-may-be-from-cape-canaveral-launch
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 06:21 AM by jacqmans »

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Online Jarnis

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BBC speculation about it being from CRS-7 are probably bunk, so much stuff growing on it that it is almost certainly an older bit. Perhaps from one of the soft-landed-to-ocean stages like CRS-3 or the first OG2 launch.

Offline Craig_VG

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Here are some more images, later today there should be even more hopefully with part numbers.
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 06:55 AM by Craig_VG »

Offline NovaSilisko

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Well it used to be a rocket part, now it's a veritable floating civilization. Those mussels(or... whatever they are, possibly space worms) are probably ready to develop their own space program by now.
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 07:35 AM by NovaSilisko »

Offline Kabloona

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Looks like part of the interstage. Photo for reference from CRS-7.

Given a North Atlantic Drift current speed of around 0.2 knots, it looks to me like it would take around 17 months to drift to England. The OG2 launch occurred right around that time, July 2014, and it soft-landed in the ocean, so the interstage would have been mostly intact.

So timing and landing conditions appear to be consistent with an OG2 interstage.

« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 08:12 AM by Kabloona »

Offline WBY1984

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It's a large section, I would tend to think ocean landing rather than CRS-7 too. I'm still surprised by the muscles: Not even MH370 wreckage had that amount on. Different ocean of course, though.

I live not too far from Lands End in Cornwall - the closest mainland point to the Scilly Isles. This whole area is still living in the 1950's, not much happens here (and less than nothing happens in the Scillies) so the local press will be reporting on this for weeks...
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 08:21 AM by WBY1984 »

Offline NovaSilisko

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Also, I don't see any evidence of grid fin mounting points on the interstage recovered, unless they sheared off somehow. The mussels are deep but I don't think they'd be deep enough to cover the fairly tall mounting point which, presumably, would be very sturdy to cope with the forces involved.
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 09:15 AM by NovaSilisko »

Offline Space Pete

Pretty incredible to have part of a F9 wash up in the UK! Although all the locals had better close their eyes and not look at it, since it's proprietary US technology. ;D

But seriously, I hope it's returned to SpaceX free of charge. I assume it has some kind of serial number marked on it somewhere that SpaceX can use to ID it?
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Offline WBY1984

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But seriously, I hope it's returned to SpaceX free of charge.

If I were SpaceX I'd worry: Have you heard of the pub on St Mary's that stole the timbers of a shipwreck to furnish their interiors?! :P
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 09:38 AM by WBY1984 »

Online vanoord

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Also, I don't see any evidence of grid fin mounting points on the interstage recovered, unless they sheared off somehow. The mussels are deep but I don't think they'd be deep enough to cover the fairly tall mounting point which, presumably, would be very sturdy to cope with the forces involved.

CRS3 didn't have grid fins, so seems a more likely candidate?

That launched on 18th April 2014, so 19 months ago - which would seem broadly consistent with the time to wash across the Atlantic.

Really don't see that level of marine growth happening in five months (this is one of the few things I can comment on from a position of some knowledge!). Again, 19 months would be much more consistent.

Offline wxmeddler

I'm no marine biologist, but I've had my time around boats to know that kind of biological growth definitely is 1yr + worth of time at sea.

Edit : More info : The article video cited the growth being goose barnacles. A quick search on Goose Barnacle growth rates show that it grows very rapidly in the first year (15mm (~1mm/mo)) then 2 to 3 mm/yr after. They are measured from their base to the filter tip at the top. Looking at the images above, even without scale, it seems most are pretty big meaning they are most likely a year + old.

Edit to remove spurious comment: Oh Scilly off the UK, not Sicily (Italy).  :-X The above still stands.
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 11:12 AM by wxmeddler »

Offline Star One

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Pretty incredible to have part of a F9 wash up in the UK! Although all the locals had better close their eyes and not look at it, since it's proprietary US technology. ;D

But seriously, I hope it's returned to SpaceX free of charge. I assume it has some kind of serial number marked on it somewhere that SpaceX can use to ID it?

Why should the local council have to pay for sending it back to SpaceX. SpaceX can pay & collect it themselves.
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 10:43 AM by Chris Bergin »

Offline Jester

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how about SpaceX donates it to Chris as a wall ornament ? ;-)

Offline Zaran

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I live closer to it than Chris B so I call dibs!

I wonder if they will attempt to clean off the barnacles to get a better look at the rest of it.

Online Johnnyhinbos

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I live closer to it than Chris B so I call dibs!

I wonder if they will attempt to clean off the barnacles to get a better look at the rest of it.
Well, the cleared part looks like a hand sweep. It would have been fun to be there as the American flag gets swept clean...
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Offline woods170

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BBC speculation about it being from CRS-7 are probably bunk, so much stuff growing on it that it is almost certainly an older bit. Perhaps from one of the soft-landed-to-ocean stages like CRS-3 or the first OG2 launch.

I'm a biologist by training and IMO there is no way this could be from CRS-7. Way too much (and too large!) biologicals on that piece for only 5 months in the Atlantic waters. It must be considerably older.
Given that it is a rather large intact piece it is probably from one of the early water landings. I agree with other folks here that this could possibly be part of CRS-3 or CRS-4 interstages. Those would be much better fits for the amount of biologicals versus time-in-water.

Edit: Id-work by folks on Reddit have this be part of CRS-4.
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 02:01 PM by woods170 »

Offline Prober

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Offline laszlo

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But seriously, I hope it's returned to SpaceX free of charge.

If I were SpaceX I'd worry: Have you heard of the pub on St Mary's that stole the timbers of a shipwreck to furnish their interiors?! :P

Salvaged, not stole. Please, don't impugn the good people of St. Mary's.

As far as the free return, is Elon giving free rides?

Offline Craftyatom

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As far as the free return, is Elon giving free rides?

Depends, is there a suitably large concrete pad somewhere in England?  ;)
All aboard the HSF hype train!  Choo Choo!

Online Jarnis

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Reddit sleuths have pretty conclusively determined that this is from CRS-4. Beak of the Falcon goes past o in only one of the three potential candidates (cores that are from right time frame and have no grid fins).

https://i.imgur.com/15qShQd.jpg

(also attached)

Good thing the logo painter wasn't 100% perfect in positioning when applying the stencil :)
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 01:12 PM by Jarnis »

Offline Dappa

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In trying to find out which launch this debris belongs to, I've been looking at logo placement in relation to text. I compared that piece of debris (in the opening post) to a number of F9 launches. Flights I've eliminated are:
Flight 4, 5: falcon logo too high in relation to text
Flight 6: launched from Vandenberg.
Flight 8, 9, 10, 11, 12: tip of falcon's beak is centered above letter 'O', debris has it more to the right.
I also haven't considered any flights after flight 13, because those shouldn't have had enough time to drift across the Pond yet.

I have not been able to eliminate the following flights based on imagery I found (or didn't find):
1. Dragon boilerplate
2. COTS 1 demo
3. COTS C2+ demo
7. SES 8
13. CRS 4

So, can you guys think of any other reason why this debris should, of shouldn't be from one of these five launches?

edit: ninja'ed...
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 01:29 PM by Dappa »

Online Jarnis

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Dappa, see my above post. CRS-4.

Edit: Also reportedly a serial number was found on the debris somewhere:

"Fs3-12910-f9"

CRS-4 was F9-012
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 01:04 PM by Jarnis »

Offline Okie_Steve

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So, what makes it float if it's aluminum, insulation?

Offline speedevil

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-cornwall-34941462


Spacex's render shows the section perfectly. http://www.spacex.com/sites/all/themes/spacex2012/images/falcon9/falcon9-render.png

Doesn't get much easier to work out what it is than that.
I guess there must be a helium tank inside to provide flotation?

Interesting question is on what basis are they assuming it's the most recent launch.
Have there been any graphical changes?

Oops - just noticed this is a dupe, but can't delete it.
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 02:44 PM by speedevil »

Offline speedevil

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So, what makes it float if it's aluminum, insulation?

It is possible there is an empty quite large helium tank in there.
IIRC CRS-4 diddn't have grid fins, so no possible empty hydraulic tanks.
« Last Edit: 11/27/2015 02:49 PM by speedevil »

Offline Beittil

Not per se, anything with a density lower than that of water would actually float. The salinity helps to...

Online edkyle99

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So, what makes it float if it's aluminum, insulation?
Isn't the interstage made of largely composite materials?

 - Ed Kyle

Offline meithan

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Isn't the interstage made of largely composite materials?

 - Ed Kyle

It's a carbon composite, according to SpaceX. Hard to tell what its exact density is, but it looks like 1.5-1.6 g/cm^3 is typical for such materials.

Offline TO

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Hat tip to Jim, NSF SHEPHERD

in      SpaceX Falcon 9 FT - ORBCOMM-2 - RTF (Return To Flight) DISCUSSION THREAD
Why is the logo on the rocket so important?

So you can find the pieces.

Offline llanitedave

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Wikipedia has already updated its entry on the mission.
"I've just abducted an alien -- now what?"

Offline pospa

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Isn't the interstage made of largely composite materials? - Ed Kyle

It's a carbon composite, according to SpaceX. Hard to tell what its exact density is, but it looks like 1.5-1.6 g/cm^3 is typical for such materials.

Isn't it aluminium honeycomb carbon composite panel, like the payload fairing is?
Then it would be super light, a lots of air in it, easy to float on the water.
I'm sure you remember this picture from June  http://i.imgur.com/9StxDHt.jpg
« Last Edit: 11/28/2015 11:33 AM by pospa »


Online Jarnis

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Great thread. So it was this Falcon 9! http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2014/09/spacex-launch-dragon-crs-4-mission/

Well, it definitely looks like it, but you could ping your SpaceX contact if they would care to verify that from the part serial number I mentioned above.

Of course they probably are on a Thanksgiving break until Monday...

Offline meithan

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Isn't it aluminium honeycomb carbon composite panel, like the payload fairing is?
Then it would be super light, a lots of air in it, easy to flow on the water.
I'm sure you remember this picture from June  http://i.imgur.com/9StxDHt.jpg

Yes, you're quite right, it's not the first time Falcon 9 parts appear floating ashore. The density of the rocket/interstage structural panels must be lower than your typical carbon fiber.

Could it be from insulation layers? Although the interstage doesn't require insulation.

Offline jcm

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I did a couple of quick radio interviews with BBC Radio 4 and BBC Plymouth clarifying that it's probably successful CRS-4, and definitely not failed CRS-7.

Alas they were too brief for me to get in a reference to Elon Mollusk. Maybe next time..

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Offline Archibald

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Quote
So, what makes it float if it's aluminum, insulation?




Quote
No, no. What else floats in water?

Peasant 1: Bread.

Peasant 2: Apples.

Peasant 3: Very small rocks.

Peasant 1: Cider.

Peasant 2: Gravy.

Peasant 3: Cherries.

Peasant 1: Mud.

Peasant 2: Churches.

Peasant 3: Lead! Lead!

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Offline Jet Black

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Online Jarnis

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Bunch of additional closeups of the interstage piece:

http://imgur.com/a/8nWWw

Offline obi-wan

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Shame there were no GoPro pods mounted on it...

Offline Archibald

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Couldn't resist ;)
That was even better, laughed out loud
Quote
Well it used to be a rocket part, now it's a veritable floating civilization. Those mussels(or... whatever they are, possibly space worms) are probably ready to develop their own space program by now.

Mussels into spaaace !

Offline pospa

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Couldn't resist ;)
That was even better, laughed out loud
Quote
Well it used to be a rocket part, now it's a veritable floating civilization. Those mussels(or... whatever they are, possibly space worms) are probably ready to develop their own space program by now.
Mussels into spaaace !

GBCSP - Goose Barnacle Commercial Space Program  :)

Online jacqmans

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The last couple of post have nothing to do with the topic, please keep it on the topic....

Offline Antilope7724

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Big pieces like this staying afloat for months or years can be a hazard to navigation. With more rocket parts being made of composites and with increased launch rates of this material, this might become a real problem.

Offline DanseMacabre

Big pieces like this staying afloat for months or years can be a hazard to navigation. With more rocket parts being made of composites and with increased launch rates of this material, this might become a real problem.

Well with any luck there should be no more additions to this debris pool beyond the PLF (Hooray Re-usability!)

Offline guckyfan

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Well with any luck there should be no more additions to this debris pool beyond the PLF (Hooray Re-usability!)

You forgot payload fairing reuse.  :) Elon Musk has said they are working on it.

Offline kevin-rf

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I would wager more large detritus washes out to sea from the Banana River during a storm than would be shed by all the Falcons if SpaceX was launching a full schedule. While clearly a hazard, it's a drop in the bucket compared to everything else.
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