Author Topic: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH  (Read 14178 times)

Offline Joris

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Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« on: 06/30/2017 08:37 PM »
Assuming their is a market for a wider fairing. (NROL for example)

Would it be possible to put a larger fairing on F9, or is it currently at the limit of what is doable?

Would a larger fairing be possible on FH or do the aerodynamics of fairing size not differ here?
JIMO would have been the first proper spaceship.

Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #1 on: 06/30/2017 08:48 PM »
It could be possible on FH (or so I've heard), but as far as I/we know there's no real demand for a wider or taller fairing.
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Online Lars-J

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #2 on: 06/30/2017 08:51 PM »
Assuming their is a market for a wider fairing. (NROL for example)

Would it be possible to put a larger fairing on F9, or is it currently at the limit of what is doable?

Would a larger fairing be possible on FH or do the aerodynamics of fairing size not differ here?

Possible? Yes. Practical? Maybe not. (assuming you mean wider fairings - longer fairings would be easier)

Online gongora

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #3 on: 06/30/2017 09:19 PM »
They don't need a wider fairing for DoD/NRO heavy launches, they need a longer fairing.

Offline Joris

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #4 on: 07/01/2017 12:27 PM »
They don't need a wider fairing for DoD/NRO heavy launches, they need a longer fairing.

Atlas V and Delta IV-heavy currently have much longer fairing options than F9. Do you think SpaceX should add this option aswell? How tall can they even make the F9 that is 70m in its block 5 version?

It would enable SIGINT launches, but would NRO keep those on ULA vehicles anyway with the whole emphasis on having multiple launch services available?



JIMO would have been the first proper spaceship.

Online yokem55

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #5 on: 07/01/2017 01:19 PM »
They don't need a wider fairing for DoD/NRO heavy launches, they need a longer fairing.

Atlas V and Delta IV-heavy currently have much longer fairing options than F9. Do you think SpaceX should add this option aswell? How tall can they even make the F9 that is 70m in its block 5 version?

It would enable SIGINT launches, but would NRO keep those on ULA vehicles anyway with the whole emphasis on having multiple launch services available?
It isn't just big sigint birds. Keyhole birds don't fit either. And I have to wonder how much the NRO is going to keep on the same path for needing those big sats when more redundancy and lower costs can be had from large constellations of smaller satellites.
« Last Edit: 07/01/2017 01:20 PM by yokem55 »

Offline Sam Ho

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #6 on: 07/01/2017 01:27 PM »
The Falcon fairing, at 5m, is already pretty wide. Ariane 5 is also 5m, Atlas and Delta offer a choice of 4m or 5m, and Proton is 4m, with 5m under development. As noted above, there are NSS missions that could use a longer fairing than SpaceX currently offers.

Online gongora

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #7 on: 07/01/2017 02:04 PM »
This is the large fairing requirement for DoD.

Offline Star One

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #8 on: 07/01/2017 02:05 PM »
They don't need a wider fairing for DoD/NRO heavy launches, they need a longer fairing.

Atlas V and Delta IV-heavy currently have much longer fairing options than F9. Do you think SpaceX should add this option aswell? How tall can they even make the F9 that is 70m in its block 5 version?

It would enable SIGINT launches, but would NRO keep those on ULA vehicles anyway with the whole emphasis on having multiple launch services available?
It isn't just big sigint birds. Keyhole birds don't fit either. And I have to wonder how much the NRO is going to keep on the same path for needing those big sats when more redundancy and lower costs can be had from large constellations of smaller satellites.

I'd think that only the FH could lift something like the Advance Orion what with its high mass and direct insertion into GEO so the F9 wouldn't even be offered for it.

Online yokem55

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #9 on: 07/01/2017 02:07 PM »
They don't need a wider fairing for DoD/NRO heavy launches, they need a longer fairing.

Atlas V and Delta IV-heavy currently have much longer fairing options than F9. Do you think SpaceX should add this option aswell? How tall can they even make the F9 that is 70m in its block 5 version?

It would enable SIGINT launches, but would NRO keep those on ULA vehicles anyway with the whole emphasis on having multiple launch services available?
It isn't just big sigint birds. Keyhole birds don't fit either. And I have to wonder how much the NRO is going to keep on the same path for needing those big sats when more redundancy and lower costs can be had from large constellations of smaller satellites.

I'd think that only the FH could lift something like the Advance Orion what with its high mass and direct insertion into GEO so the F9 wouldn't even be offered for it.
Falcon Heavy has the same size fairing and as far as we know, SpaceX doesn't have the tooling (big enough autoclave) to make a longer one.

Offline Star One

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #10 on: 07/01/2017 02:22 PM »
They don't need a wider fairing for DoD/NRO heavy launches, they need a longer fairing.

Atlas V and Delta IV-heavy currently have much longer fairing options than F9. Do you think SpaceX should add this option aswell? How tall can they even make the F9 that is 70m in its block 5 version?

It would enable SIGINT launches, but would NRO keep those on ULA vehicles anyway with the whole emphasis on having multiple launch services available?
It isn't just big sigint birds. Keyhole birds don't fit either. And I have to wonder how much the NRO is going to keep on the same path for needing those big sats when more redundancy and lower costs can be had from large constellations of smaller satellites.

I'd think that only the FH could lift something like the Advance Orion what with its high mass and direct insertion into GEO so the F9 wouldn't even be offered for it.
Falcon Heavy has the same size fairing and as far as we know, SpaceX doesn't have the tooling (big enough autoclave) to make a longer one.

That's odd why haven't they thought of making longer fairings if they want to win payloads like this?

Online yokem55

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #11 on: 07/01/2017 02:35 PM »
They don't need a wider fairing for DoD/NRO heavy launches, they need a longer fairing.

Atlas V and Delta IV-heavy currently have much longer fairing options than F9. Do you think SpaceX should add this option aswell? How tall can they even make the F9 that is 70m in its block 5 version?

It would enable SIGINT launches, but would NRO keep those on ULA vehicles anyway with the whole emphasis on having multiple launch services available?
It isn't just big sigint birds. Keyhole birds don't fit either. And I have to wonder how much the NRO is going to keep on the same path for needing those big sats when more redundancy and lower costs can be had from large constellations of smaller satellites.

I'd think that only the FH could lift something like the Advance Orion what with its high mass and direct insertion into GEO so the F9 wouldn't even be offered for it.
Falcon Heavy has the same size fairing and as far as we know, SpaceX doesn't have the tooling (big enough autoclave) to make a longer one.

That's odd why haven't they thought of making longer fairings if they want to win payloads like this?
There isn't much market for payloads of that size beyond the NRO. This is what saves SpaceX a lot of money - targeting 95% of the use cases and market and not chasing every single possible item to greater and greater costs...

Offline Star One

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #12 on: 07/01/2017 02:37 PM »
They don't need a wider fairing for DoD/NRO heavy launches, they need a longer fairing.

Atlas V and Delta IV-heavy currently have much longer fairing options than F9. Do you think SpaceX should add this option aswell? How tall can they even make the F9 that is 70m in its block 5 version?

It would enable SIGINT launches, but would NRO keep those on ULA vehicles anyway with the whole emphasis on having multiple launch services available?
It isn't just big sigint birds. Keyhole birds don't fit either. And I have to wonder how much the NRO is going to keep on the same path for needing those big sats when more redundancy and lower costs can be had from large constellations of smaller satellites.

I'd think that only the FH could lift something like the Advance Orion what with its high mass and direct insertion into GEO so the F9 wouldn't even be offered for it.
Falcon Heavy has the same size fairing and as far as we know, SpaceX doesn't have the tooling (big enough autoclave) to make a longer one.

That's odd why haven't they thought of making longer fairings if they want to win payloads like this?
There isn't much market for payloads of that size beyond the NRO. This is what saves SpaceX a lot of money - targeting 95% of the use cases and market and not chasing every single possible item to greater and greater costs...

But wouldn't it be worth it just for the FH especially when I imagine people like the NRO must pay top dollar to launch something like this. Unless they are just waiting for the BFS to replace it or something.

Offline su27k

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #13 on: 07/01/2017 02:50 PM »
They don't need a wider fairing for DoD/NRO heavy launches, they need a longer fairing.

Atlas V and Delta IV-heavy currently have much longer fairing options than F9. Do you think SpaceX should add this option aswell? How tall can they even make the F9 that is 70m in its block 5 version?

It would enable SIGINT launches, but would NRO keep those on ULA vehicles anyway with the whole emphasis on having multiple launch services available?
It isn't just big sigint birds. Keyhole birds don't fit either. And I have to wonder how much the NRO is going to keep on the same path for needing those big sats when more redundancy and lower costs can be had from large constellations of smaller satellites.

I'd think that only the FH could lift something like the Advance Orion what with its high mass and direct insertion into GEO so the F9 wouldn't even be offered for it.
Falcon Heavy has the same size fairing and as far as we know, SpaceX doesn't have the tooling (big enough autoclave) to make a longer one.

That's odd why haven't they thought of making longer fairings if they want to win payloads like this?

Maybe they're waiting for USAF to fund it. The house version of the 2018 NDAA allows Air Force to fund fairing and vertical integration facilities needed for NSS launches: https://mainenginecutoff.com/blog/2017/06/house-markup-2018-ndaa

Offline Star One

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #14 on: 07/01/2017 02:56 PM »
They don't need a wider fairing for DoD/NRO heavy launches, they need a longer fairing.

Atlas V and Delta IV-heavy currently have much longer fairing options than F9. Do you think SpaceX should add this option aswell? How tall can they even make the F9 that is 70m in its block 5 version?

It would enable SIGINT launches, but would NRO keep those on ULA vehicles anyway with the whole emphasis on having multiple launch services available?
It isn't just big sigint birds. Keyhole birds don't fit either. And I have to wonder how much the NRO is going to keep on the same path for needing those big sats when more redundancy and lower costs can be had from large constellations of smaller satellites.

I'd think that only the FH could lift something like the Advance Orion what with its high mass and direct insertion into GEO so the F9 wouldn't even be offered for it.
Falcon Heavy has the same size fairing and as far as we know, SpaceX doesn't have the tooling (big enough autoclave) to make a longer one.

That's odd why haven't they thought of making longer fairings if they want to win payloads like this?

Maybe they're waiting for USAF to fund it. The house version of the 2018 NDAA allows Air Force to fund fairing and vertical integration facilities needed for NSS launches: https://mainenginecutoff.com/blog/2017/06/house-markup-2018-ndaa

Thanks. That makes sense.

Online gongora

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #15 on: 07/01/2017 03:06 PM »
The relevant section of the document from su27k's link.  This would be just fine for SpaceX.  We'll see what actually comes out the end of the budgeting process.

Quote
1 SEC. 1615. EVOLVED EXPENDABLE LAUNCH VE
2 HICLE MODERNIZATION AND SUSTAINMENT
3 OF ASSURED ACCESS TO SPACE.
4 (a) DEVELOPMENT.—
5 (1) EVOLVED EXPENDABLE LAUNCH VEHI6
CLE.—Using funds described in paragraph (3), the
7 Secretary of Defense may only obligate or expend
8 funds to carry out the evolved expendable launch ve
9 hicle program to—
10 (A) develop a domestic rocket propulsion
11 system to replace non-allied space launch en
12 gines;
13 (B) develop the necessary interfaces to, or
14 integration of, such domestic rocket propulsion
15 system with an existing or new launch vehicle;
16 (C) develop capabilities necessary to enable
17 commercially available space launch vehicles or
18 infrastructure to meet any requirements that
19 are unique to national security space missions
20 to meet the assured access to space require
21 ments pursuant to section 2273 of title 10,
22 United States Code, with respect to only—
23 (i) modifications to such vehicles re
24 quired for national security space missions,
25 including—

1 (I) certification and compliance
2 of such vehicles for use in national se
3 curity space missions;
4 (II) fairings necessary for the
5 launch of national security space pay
6 loads to orbit; and
7 (III) other upgrades to meet per
8 formance, reliability, and orbital re
9 quirements that cannot otherwise be
10 met through the use of commercially
11 available launch vehicles; and
12 (ii) the development of infrastructure
13 unique to national security space missions,
14 such as infrastructure for the use of heavy
15 launch vehicles, including—
16 (I) facilities and equipment for
17 the vertical integration of payloads;
18 (II) secure facilities for the proc
19 essing of classified payloads; and
20 (III) other facilities and equip
21 ment, including ground systems and
22 expanded capabilities, unique to na
23 tional security space launches and the
24 launch of national security payloads;

1 (D) conduct activities to modernize and
2 improve existing certified launch vehicles, or ex
3 isting launch vehicles previously contracted for
4 use by the Air Force, including restarting a
5 dormant supply chain, and infrastructure to in
6 crease the cost effectiveness of the launch sys
7 tem; or
8 (E) certify new, modified, or existing
9 launch vehicle systems.
10 (2) PROHIBITION.—Except as provided in this
11 section, none of the funds described in paragraph
12 (3) shall be obligated or expended for the evolved ex
13 pendable launch vehicle program, including the de
14 velopment of new launch vehicles under such pro
15 gram.

Offline Jim

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #16 on: 07/01/2017 03:47 PM »
They don't need a wider fairing for DoD/NRO heavy launches, they need a longer fairing.

Atlas V and Delta IV-heavy currently have much longer fairing options than F9. Do you think SpaceX should add this option aswell? How tall can they even make the F9 that is 70m in its block 5 version?

It would enable SIGINT launches, but would NRO keep those on ULA vehicles anyway with the whole emphasis on having multiple launch services available?
It isn't just big sigint birds. Keyhole birds don't fit either. And I have to wonder how much the NRO is going to keep on the same path for needing those big sats when more redundancy and lower costs can be had from large constellations of smaller satellites.

Because they are not as good as big sats

Offline cppetrie

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #17 on: 07/01/2017 06:28 PM »
That's odd why haven't they thought of making longer fairings if they want to win payloads like this?
There isn't much market for payloads of that size beyond the NRO. This is what saves SpaceX a lot of money - targeting 95% of the use cases and market and not chasing every single possible item to greater and greater costs...
Yes. What he said. You can't make money by spending lots more money to chase every single possible use case. Make it to handle most of what is out there and do it cheaply and you'll win most of what is out there. Leave the edge cases to others until such time as they aren't edge cases anymore or someone else funds it or the rocket you're building for other reasons entirely can handle them by default (I think SpaceX will use this last one).

Offline OneSpeed

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #18 on: 07/02/2017 12:24 PM »
This is the large fairing requirement for DoD.

Here is the standard Falcon fairing beside one stretched to that requirement. For the same payload mass evenly distributed, the bending moment at the PAF would increase by 50% using the large fairing.
« Last Edit: 07/02/2017 01:03 PM by OneSpeed »

Online yokem55

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Re: Wider fairing on top of F9/FH
« Reply #19 on: 07/02/2017 02:11 PM »
One thought - they actually do have another customer for the longer fairing - CommX. As they will likely be volume limited on sats per launch way before being limited by mass, the bigger fairing  might be a good investment to cut down the number of launches needed to get the constellation deployed.

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