Author Topic: SpaceX at the Guiana Space Centre  (Read 7794 times)

Offline AmigaClone

Re: SpaceX at the Guiana Space Centre
« Reply #20 on: 11/01/2022 02:48 am »
Russia is considered by most ESA member states to be part of Europe. Soyuz is therefore not viewed as a competing launcher
This is a very compelling argument that I had not considered at all, but it makes perfect sense when I think about it. Europe has clearly tried hard to "bring Russia in" with a variety of things (like oil and gas pipelines). Obviously, this falls into the same category, but a venture with SpaceX would not.

I suppose we're still a long way from anyone offering an "international spaceport," which would serve launch vehicles from any country--much as an international airport serves aircraft from anywhere.

Al Cantara in Brazil seems more attractive. They have an ITAR agreement in place, the location is decent, and the brazilians would love the local investment to turn the spaceport into an international gateway.

Alcāntara Space Center in Brazil might be politically viable at the moment due to the ITAR agreement signed in 2019. On the other hand, SpaceX would be basically starting from scratch there. They would need to build not only the pad, but any other facilities that they would need - to likely including a port for the F9 boosters to arrive after landing on a drone ship.

I don't see SpaceX making that investment now for the Falcon 9. Starship is likely a better a possibility. On the other hand, the Brazilian Space Agency has tried making deals to launch rockets from the Ukraine and from Russia before so that might be a factor as well.

Offline deadman1204

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Re: SpaceX at the Guiana Space Centre
« Reply #21 on: 11/01/2022 12:56 pm »
Whats the point? There aren't payloads spaceX can't lift right now. Falcon Heavy is even rarely used. This would be a huge investment (continual to maintain the facilities and people), yet nothing would be gained except something on paper.

Online woods170

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Re: SpaceX at the Guiana Space Centre
« Reply #22 on: 11/01/2022 02:18 pm »
Whats the point? There aren't payloads spaceX can't lift right now. Falcon Heavy is even rarely used. This would be a huge investment (continual to maintain the facilities and people), yet nothing would be gained except something on paper.

Exactly. And that applies for both Alcantara in Brasil and CSG in French Guyana. It is nonsensical for SpaceX to invest in having additional F9/FH launch pads outside the CONUS.

Starship might be a different story.
« Last Edit: 11/01/2022 02:58 pm by woods170 »

Offline LouScheffer

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Re: SpaceX at the Guiana Space Centre
« Reply #23 on: 11/02/2022 05:33 pm »
I wonder how much mass a Falcon 9 could lift to GTO in first stage recovery mode from Kourou.  Six tonnes?  More?  It can do 5.5 tonnes from the Cape.
The difference is not so much.  At 5.17o latitude rather than 28.39o, they get an extra 54 m/s from the Earth's spin.  That only increases the payload to 5.7 tonnes.

However, the customer gets an additional benefit.  Since the circularization burn needs to remove less inclination, it's about 300 m/s cheaper.  That's why a stock orbit from Ariane is GEO-1500 m/s and one from the Cape is GEO-1800.  Given that GEO stationkeeping is about 50 m/s/year, that's potentially 6 years of extra life.

But maybe SpaceX could convince the customer to spend that 300 m/s to help raise the satellite, keeping the final lifetime constant.  In that case they could potentially loft up to 6.8 tonnes or thereabouts.

Tags: SpaceX Guiana Ariane ESA 
 

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