Author Topic: SpaceX customers' views on reuse  (Read 162092 times)

Offline ZachF

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #420 on: 12/27/2017 02:23 PM »
I agree that the stability of Block 5 is needed for USAF certification.  2018 should see many fly, and refly, so certification is soon to follow.

By 2019 (or perhaps even late next year), F9B5 could be flying more launches in a hot/busy month than Atlas V or Ariane 5 fly in a year.
« Last Edit: 12/27/2017 02:27 PM by ZachF »

Offline deruch

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #421 on: 12/29/2017 12:23 PM »
Maybe 20% by numbers and falling rapidly.  They are only a big percentage (50-ish%) of the cost of satellites.
Hasn't the USG already flown on a flight-proven booster(CRS-13)?

http://www.sia.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/SIA-SSIR-2017.pdf

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[/notAviewIagreeWith]

What is controversial about ISS program (and C3PO?) having a higher tolerance for risk in supply missions than LSP generally does?  They had very explicitly defined CRS missions as all Category D payloads, though some trunk payloads may have bumped this up on specific flights.  But, I actually thought that was one of the more interesting tidbits during the recent CRS-13 prelaunch briefing.  The ISS program deputy (can't remember his name), talked about their process to determine what data they wanted to see from SpaceX before moving ahead with the preflown booster's use.  He specifically stated that LSP had been included in discussions/evaluations/decisions (?).  Which means that even if LSP isn't as open to using preflown boosters, they've at least already had to start thinking about it and have had some exposure/input/buy-in to the process.  IMO, that should hopefully serve to start greasing the wheels for an eventual move to full adoption in the future.
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Online speedevil

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #422 on: 12/29/2017 01:00 PM »
What is controversial about ISS program (and C3PO?) having a higher tolerance for risk in supply missions than LSP generally does?  They had very explicitly defined CRS missions as all Category D payloads, though some trunk payloads may have bumped this up on specific flights.  But, I actually thought that was one of the more interesting tidbits during the recent CRS-13 prelaunch briefing.  The ISS program deputy (can't remember his name), talked about their process to determine what data they wanted to see from SpaceX before moving ahead with the preflown booster's use.  He specifically stated that LSP had been included in discussions/evaluations/decisions (?). 
From memory, it was also mentioned that while some risks may increase, some may decrease, and their best estimates are that it's a wash.
If you view the statistics classically, then unreflown are at ~2/43, and reflown at 0/4. Perhaps slightly over 2/43 if you count the anomalies in flight.

0/4 doesn't retire a whole lot of risk, but once you start getting to 0/16 as seems likely before the first dragon 2 launch, or 0/30, when the first crewed launch goes up, ... (assuming of course that the first numbers stay the same)

(edit: added some, as I forgot the FH side-cores which should probably count)
« Last Edit: 12/29/2017 01:13 PM by speedevil »

Online AncientU

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #423 on: 12/29/2017 01:06 PM »
The advantage (and value) of the more risk tolerant approach in COTS is that it allows innovation to proceed so long as it is properly supported by test and analysis.  (Quite a contrast to the crew program.)  The move to boosters with landing legs and intentions to do post-separation landing experiments is one example; the acceptance of SpaceX's test regime for previously-flown boosters is another.  Contrast this with a COTS program that strictly limited SpaceX to flying the approved v1.0 that they did demo flights with...

Customer acceptance that the launch service provider will be as deeply committed to success and capable enough to handle the technology and analyses as they are makes this a true public-private partnership.  We saw the same kind of win-win relationship between SES and SpaceX -- from the very beginning -- and now we see it with Iridium.

It seems that the relationship with the USAF for NSS flights is closer to the COTS model than it is to commercial crew or LSP, notably after AF brass stepped in to stop the dictation of requirements that was happening during initial certification to avoid nullifying the advantages of commercial innovation.  This wise move by the USAF probably indicates that they will accept reflown cores before parts of NASA like commercial crew and LSP.
« Last Edit: 12/29/2017 01:08 PM by AncientU »
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Online gongora

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #424 on: 12/29/2017 01:38 PM »
I agree that the stability of Block 5 is needed for USAF certification.  2018 should see many fly, and refly, so certification is soon to follow.

By 2019 (or perhaps even late next year), F9B5 could be flying more launches in a hot/busy month than Atlas V or Ariane 5 fly in a year.

By late next year F9 is not going to be flying 7+ times a month.  That's more than double the flight rate SpaceX is aiming for next year.

Here is an excerpt from an Air Force Magazine article on EELV:
Quote
When asked if recycled rockets could be used for launches as soon as EELV Phase 1A, Raymond was unwilling to commit to a timetable, but said, “I’m open to it.” SMC’s Leon expressed similar optimism with a bit more caution. “We don’t have a schedule for it yet” at EELV, she said. She thinks the Air Force is more likely to use recycled boosters first in “experimental-class programs” that can take advantage of rapid acquisition authorities. “You’re not going to see it in phase 1A as far as I can tell,” Leon said.
« Last Edit: 12/29/2017 01:38 PM by gongora »

Online speedevil

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #425 on: 12/29/2017 03:11 PM »
By late next year F9 is not going to be flying 7+ times a month.  That's more than double the flight rate SpaceX is aiming for next year.
More than double the rate indeed.
But, three times a month (as has happened twice this year) is more than double the rate of launches this year.

Might seven a month happen with four pads, and a similar bunching of scheduling with 30 or 35 launches  a year - maybe.

Online AncientU

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #426 on: 12/29/2017 04:36 PM »
I agree that the stability of Block 5 is needed for USAF certification.  2018 should see many fly, and refly, so certification is soon to follow.

By 2019 (or perhaps even late next year), F9B5 could be flying more launches in a hot/busy month than Atlas V or Ariane 5 fly in a year.

By late next year F9 is not going to be flying 7+ times a month.  That's more than double the flight rate SpaceX is aiming for next year.

Here is an excerpt from an Air Force Magazine article on EELV:
Quote
When asked if recycled rockets could be used for launches as soon as EELV Phase 1A, Raymond was unwilling to commit to a timetable, but said, “I’m open to it.” SMC’s Leon expressed similar optimism with a bit more caution. “We don’t have a schedule for it yet” at EELV, she said. She thinks the Air Force is more likely to use recycled boosters first in “experimental-class programs” that can take advantage of rapid acquisition authorities. “You’re not going to see it in phase 1A as far as I can tell,” Leon said.

That quote from General Raymond was made five weeks after the first reflight.
https://www.defensenews.com/digital-show-dailies/space-symposium/2017/04/06/air-force-space-command-head-open-to-reusable-rockets/

The quote from (former Boeing executive) Claire Leon is from an unknown date, but refers to the above statement from the Space Symposium.  She did make a statement a month later on July 5th (still only one reflight) that pre-flown boosters would be precluded:

Quote
For the first part of the Pentagon’s competitive space launch contracts — dubbed Phase 1A — the Air Force has decided not to allow previously flown boosters for any missions.

Leon said that approving reusable-rocket technology would require an entirely new certification process, at a time when the military wants to focus certifying things like the Falcon Heavy or new entrants like Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin.

However, the service is open to eventually accepting reusable technology as part of a company’s bid.

“We are trying to reduce the cost of launch, and if this is the offering from commercial providers we need to get on board,” Leon said. “It’s just going to take us a little bit of time, but it is something we are starting to study first. Longer term my hope is any company that’s offering flight proven hardware demonstrates or develops a track record that helps us build confidence.”
http://spacenews.com/air-force-ask-spacex-ula-to-bid-on-a-five-launch-contract/

Five boosters are now reflown; many more to follow in next few months.  USAF requires three flights at base level for certification.  Question is, whether a flight-proven Falcon 9 is a 'new' vehicle like FH, or if it is just a flight tested version of an already certified vehicle.

Note: Certifying Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin is years off into the future.  I suspect that flight-proven boosters will be pushed (via court if necessary) long before then.
« Last Edit: 12/29/2017 04:40 PM by AncientU »
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Offline ZachF

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #427 on: 12/29/2017 04:51 PM »
I agree that the stability of Block 5 is needed for USAF certification.  2018 should see many fly, and refly, so certification is soon to follow.

By 2019 (or perhaps even late next year), F9B5 could be flying more launches in a hot/busy month than Atlas V or Ariane 5 fly in a year.

By late next year F9 is not going to be flying 7+ times a month.  That's more than double the flight rate SpaceX is aiming for next year.

Here is an excerpt from an Air Force Magazine article on EELV:
Quote
When asked if recycled rockets could be used for launches as soon as EELV Phase 1A, Raymond was unwilling to commit to a timetable, but said, “I’m open to it.” SMC’s Leon expressed similar optimism with a bit more caution. “We don’t have a schedule for it yet” at EELV, she said. She thinks the Air Force is more likely to use recycled boosters first in “experimental-class programs” that can take advantage of rapid acquisition authorities. “You’re not going to see it in phase 1A as far as I can tell,” Leon said.

For 2019 SpaceX is aiming for over 40 a year, which is ~4 a month. Some months will probably be a good deal more, and some less (or even 0). Ariane launches 5-7 times a year (6 this year), and Atlas V 6-9 times a year.(6 this year) With 3 pads operational I don't think a single hot month of ~7 launches in out of the question, probably not in 2018 but perhaps 2019.
« Last Edit: 12/29/2017 04:53 PM by ZachF »

Online AncientU

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #428 on: 12/29/2017 06:01 PM »
2019 has a goal of 30-40 flights for customers per GS, and an unknown number of Starlink flights.  Could easily be ten or more of the latter, so 40-50+ flights.  Since it is possible that they will only fabricate 10-15 Block 5 boosters per year, and likely all Starlink flights will be on reflown boosters (the zeroth 'customer view' on reuse is expected to be bullish), there will have to be something like 30-40 reflights, or 3-ish reused boosters flying per month.

At that point, Atlas v's and Ariane 5's diminishingly small flight rates won't matter.
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Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #429 on: 01/11/2018 01:03 PM »
I missed the possibility, now confirmed, of SES-16 (GovSat1) launching this month on a flight-proven booster:

Quote from: SpaceFlightNow
SES is considering launching its next satellite — SES 16 developed in partnership with the government of Luxembourg — with a reused Falcon 9 booster in January.

Article Link

SES 16 slips to January and on a re-used booster (as I think can be expected for most SES flights from here on out).

Confirmation it's flight-proven in today's press release. I'll update the first post in the thread.

Online Lar

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #430 on: 01/11/2018 08:25 PM »
I love the table in the first post but I wonder if there is some way to distinguish among announcments, planned launches, and actual launches in a visual manner that isn't dependent on color. Maybe indenting? Just musing.  Thanks for doing it!
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Offline rockets4life97

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #431 on: 01/11/2018 08:26 PM »
I love the table in the first post but I wonder if there is some way to distinguish among announcments, planned launches, and actual launches in a visual manner that isn't dependent on color.

Maybe bold actual and planned launches? It would bring out the color difference and differentiate from announcements.

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #432 on: 01/25/2018 03:34 PM »
I’m sorry, I completely missed the last couple of posts, my apologies.

I’ve tried doing the re-use dates in bold in the first post. I haven’t put the names in bold as well due to the extra width it would use. Not sure if I’m happy with the result or not, but at least I think the re-use entries stand out more!

Online AncientU

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #433 on: 01/25/2018 04:34 PM »
I’m sorry, I completely missed the last couple of posts, my apologies.

I’ve tried doing the re-use dates in bold in the first post. I haven’t put the names in bold as well due to the extra width it would use. Not sure if I’m happy with the result or not, but at least I think the re-use entries stand out more!

Maybe highlighting 1st reuse, 2nd reuse, etc. in 'Event' column would not mess with formatting but still raise visibility.
« Last Edit: 01/25/2018 04:35 PM by AncientU »
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Online AncientU

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #434 on: 01/27/2018 11:27 AM »
Availability of Block 5, customer early acceptance, and Khrunichev's quality problems have created the perfect storm:

Quote
Russia’s Proton rocket falls on hard times
Quote
After 53 years in service, the main Russian launcher is running out of customers.

Quote
The Proton rocket, Russia’s primary commercial launch vehicle, faces a life-and-death struggle to remain a competitive player on the international launch market, industry sources say. The veteran Soviet space rocket has spent nearly a quarter of a century as the vehicle of choice for operators of communications satellites all over the world. But it has fallen to near-irrelevance in just a matter of two years. After reaching a peak of 12 launches in 2010, the Proton is now staring at a real possibility of flying just a couple of missions this year and not delivering a single commercial payload.

Quote
All these technical, political, and financial problems combined to leave GKNPTs Khrunichev deeply in debt and triggered the exodus of customers last year—as many as five deals were reportedly lost in the second half of 2017.
https://arstechnica.com/science/2018/01/russias-proton-rocket-falls-on-hard-times/

Maybe this prediction (below) wasn't so much fantasy as many here pooh-pooh'd.

https://twitter.com/elonmusk/media?lang=en
« Last Edit: 01/27/2018 12:03 PM by AncientU »
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Offline Kosmos2001

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #435 on: 01/27/2018 01:21 PM »
Those decimals in the Y axis are totally unnecessary. :/

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #436 on: 01/27/2018 01:36 PM »
Maybe highlighting 1st reuse, 2nd reuse, etc. in 'Event' column would not mess with formatting but still raise visibility.

Turns out that specifying a colour does override default link colour for URLs, doh! So I’ve now coloured whole rows and removed the bold.
« Last Edit: 01/27/2018 06:05 PM by FutureSpaceTourist »

Offline deruch

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #437 on: 01/28/2018 02:26 PM »
Availability of Block 5, customer early acceptance, and Khrunichev's quality problems have created the perfect storm:

https://arstechnica.com/science/2018/01/russias-proton-rocket-falls-on-hard-times/

Maybe this prediction (below) wasn't so much fantasy as many here pooh-pooh'd.

Plus the significant contraction in new commercial satellite orders for payloads in Proton's class.  At least a few lean years ahead.
Shouldn't reality posts be in "Advanced concepts"?  --Nomadd

Offline Craig_VG

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #438 on: 02/01/2018 10:44 PM »
Looks like half of all flights in 2018 will be used boosters:

"WIRED learned from sources with knowledge of the manifest that in 2018, the company intends to fly 50 percent of its 30 planned missions on recycled rockets."

https://www.wired.com/story/spacex-gears-up-to-finally-actually-launch-the-falcon-heavy/?mbid=social_twitter_onsiteshare

Online speedevil

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #439 on: 02/02/2018 09:16 AM »
Looks like half of all flights in 2018 will be used boosters:

I do wonder how many reflights the most reflown booster will get.
I think it's a moderately safe bet that it'll be over two, especially given Ms Shotwells 'ten reflights with minimal refurbishment'.

This could really slash the number of cores needed while waiting for BFR/S.

If they manage five reflights on one core, and have 17 new B5 cores made, that's ~80 launches banked, easily enough to get to at least prototype BFS without manufacturing more, or flying >5 times.
That is, make more through 2018, fly reused only in 2019 on, with the exception of crew - perhaps.
« Last Edit: 02/02/2018 09:25 AM by speedevil »

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