Author Topic: MECO podcast - Chris G. talks BFR  (Read 1185 times)

Online ChrisGebhardt

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MECO podcast - Chris G. talks BFR
« on: 10/05/2017 04:09 PM »
I joined the MECO podcast to talk about SpaceX's BFR plans, the technical challenges, and how it inspires the dream and ambition of space exploration.

https://mainenginecutoff.com/podcast/62

Offline JBF

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Re: MECO podcast - Chris G. talks BFR
« Reply #1 on: 10/05/2017 06:04 PM »
I think you made too much of an emphasis on landing in the exact orientation.  We have discussed several concepts here on NSF that could rotate it after landing or guide the ship down into the correct orientation during landing.
"In principle, rocket engines are simple, but that’s the last place rocket engines are ever simple." Jeff Bezos

Online Lars-J

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Re: MECO podcast - Chris G. talks BFR
« Reply #2 on: 10/05/2017 09:12 PM »
A good discussion, but one comment: In the talk about stockpiling F9's, people do seem to forget that F9 is not a fully reusable system... I know it was mentioned *very* briefly, but keep in mind that the upper stage will never be made reusable (per Shotwell's recent comments), so as long as F9 flies, some part of the production line will have to stay open. Even if that production line is scaled down and relocated to another location.

Online QuantumG

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Re: MECO podcast - Chris G. talks BFR
« Reply #3 on: 10/06/2017 01:43 AM »
stockpiling F9's

some part of the production line will have to stay open

Honestly, no quip intended, but what part of "stockpiling" was confusing? They intend to run the existing production line at maximum capacity - perhaps even expanding that capacity - putting the output into storage and then shut it down. SpaceX is gambling that their stockpile will be sufficient to service all their customers' needs up until BFR is acceptable to even their most conservative customers. If they run out of F9 bits before then, they lose the bet and they either don't service that customer or they have to spend a small fortune to reopen that production line - more likely they just lose the customer.

... oh, and where do I get this from? Here:

Quote from: Elon Musk
(28:20) So then getting back to the question of how do we pay for this system. This was really, I said quite a profound -- I won't call it breakthrough but realization -- that if we can build a system that cannibalizes our own products, makes our own products redundant, then all of the resources, which are quite enormous, that are used for Falcon 9, Heavy, and Dragon, can be applied to one system. Some of our customers are conservative and they want to see BFR fly several times before they're comfortable launching on it, so what we plan to do is to build ahead and have a stock of Falcon 9 and Dragon vehicles so that customers can be comfortable. If they want to use the old rocket, the old spacecraft, they can do that, because we'll have a bunch in stock, but all of our resources will then turn towards building BFR, and we believe that we can do this with the revenue we receive for launching satellites and for servicing the Space Station. - source

« Last Edit: 10/06/2017 01:46 AM by QuantumG »
Jeff Bezos has billions to spend on rockets and can go at whatever pace he likes! Wow! What pace is he going at? Well... have you heard of Zeno's paradox?

Online Lars-J

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MECO podcast - Chris G. talks BFR
« Reply #4 on: 10/06/2017 02:52 AM »
stockpiling F9's

some part of the production line will have to stay open

Honestly, no quip intended, but what part of "stockpiling" was confusing?

No quip intended? (not a good start to a post!)

No, I understand stockpiling. I just have a different interpretation of the timing of it and how it relates to BFR prototype build development.

I know what Musk and Shotwell have said. Some people are more skeptical about their time claims or cost claims. I choose to interpret any early stockpiling claim as more aspirational, while ALSO noting that so many people tend to just forget about the 2nd stage.
« Last Edit: 10/06/2017 02:59 AM by Lars-J »

Offline EspenU

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Re: MECO podcast - Chris G. talks BFR
« Reply #5 on: 10/06/2017 05:49 AM »
I really enjoyed the conversation.
You actually managed to somewhat change my views on the point to point transport plan.
After the presentation, my thoughts regarding PtP were basically "never going to happen". But I admit that I had also fallen into the thought that this was part of the near/mid term plan. Even though possible from a technical standpoint, regulation hurdles would prevent it from happening.

But looking at it from the point of view that it would only be done after BFR has flown for many years without incident, and that SpaceX will have many years (10 - 20) after that to work with governments on the regulations. I'm now more in the "probably not, but might be possible" camp.

It was also funny to hear the different pronunciations of Boca Chica ;D.

Online Lars-J

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Re: MECO podcast - Chris G. talks BFR
« Reply #6 on: 10/06/2017 08:38 AM »
It was also funny to hear the different pronunciations of Boca Chica ;D.

I can only assume that Chris had a brain fart, because I don’t know any plausible way it could be read as “Boca Cheena”. ;)

Offline Jcc

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Re: MECO podcast - Chris G. talks BFR
« Reply #7 on: 10/06/2017 11:20 AM »
stockpiling F9's

some part of the production line will have to stay open

Honestly, no quip intended, but what part of "stockpiling" was confusing?

No quip intended? (not a good start to a post!)

No, I understand stockpiling. I just have a different interpretation of the timing of it and how it relates to BFR prototype build development.

I know what Musk and Shotwell have said. Some people are more skeptical about their time claims or cost claims. I choose to interpret any early stockpiling claim as more aspirational, while ALSO noting that so many people tend to just forget about the 2nd stage.

Also, it is obvious that retaining a stockpile of Falcons and Dragons "so that customers can be comfortable" only applies when BFR is operational or nearly operational, because the intention is to move most satellite launches to BFR as soon as possible, so that Falcon is "made redundant". However, during the period when BFR is in development and early stages of manufacture, they will use the stockpile of pre flown S1, a few unused S1, and a stock of S2, but likely will need to keep S2 production going because Falcon S2 will not be reusable.

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