My predictions for 2024:- ULA launches five Atlas Vs and the last Delta IV Heavy. Two Atlas Vs are dedicated to Project Kuiper while the USSF-51, ViaSat 3 EMEA and Starliner CFT missions are launched too.- SpaceX launches 140 Falcon rockets (F9 and FH) while Starship flies four times. Two booster catch attempts are made, both of which succeed. Two of the four Starship missions launch Starlink v2 sats.- Artemis 2 launches on time.- Vega-C returns to flight in Q4 2024.- Blue Origin resumes space tourism flights aboard New Shepard.- Virgin Galactic does at least four SpaceShipTwo flights; one of them is dedicated to science experiments similar to Galactic 01.- Chang'e 6 launches to the lunar south pole and successfully completes its mission.- An upgraded LVM3 with a kerosene-fueled core stage makes its debut with a mass simulator; ISRO announces the eventual retirement of the hypergolic-fueled core stage of LVM3.- Two Gaganyaan test missions are flown, paving the way for the first manned Gaganyaan mission early next year.- The Russia-USA ISS astronaut barter agreement is extended by a couple more Soyuz and Crew Dragon flights.- Polaris Dawn launches, raising millions of dollars for St. Jude. Jared Isaacman is the one that conducts the EVA during Polaris Dawn.
Suborbital Crewed Launches- Blue Origin resumes space tourism flights aboard New Shepard. This may occur after at least one more uncrewed New Shepard flight.- Virgin Galactic flies VSS Unity twice without any issues before it's retirement.Orbital Crewed Launches- SpaceX will launch five Crew Dragon missions (Axion-3, Axion-4, Polaris Dawn, SpX-Crew 8 and SpX-Crew 9).- Michael Lopez-Alegria will become the first astronaut to reach the ISS on board a Crew Dragon.- Jareed Isaacman will become the first astronaut to launch twice on a Crew Dragon that doesn't dock to the ISS.- Polaris Dawn will launch either in Q2 or Q3 2024 and complete most of it's announced objectives.- Russia will launch two or three crewed Soyuz missions and perform at least one partial crew rotation at the ISS.- China will launch two or three crewed Shenzhou with at least two crew rotations at their Tiangong station.- Boeing Starliner CFT will successfully dock with the ISS. At the time Boeing officials may express hope to be launching their first operational mission later in 2024, but that is pushed back to no earlier than Q1 2025.- Arthemis II is delayed to 2025 after NASA officials spending most of 2024 insisting it will be ready to launch in November 2024. 09 January 2024 - NASA delays Arthemis II to 2025 The announcement of the delay was at least 6 months earlier than expected- IRSO will launch at least one uncrewed Gaganyaan capsule on an orbital mission while preparing for a crewed launch no earlier than 2025.- The four orbital crewed vehicles that I predict will launch with a crew in 2024 (Crew Dragon, Soyuz, Shenzhou, and Starliner) will collectively have two achievements.Quote- Between ten and twelve crewed launches.Note: There have been four times that there has been ten or crewed launches in a year. 1985 saw 11 crewed launches while 1992, 1994, and 1997 each saw 10 launches.The 32+ individuals reaching orbit in 2024 will be the most individuals reaching orbit since 2009 when the Space Shuttle was still flying.Note: Depending on the number of individuals on board New Shepard tourist flights in 2024, there is a chance for a new record of number of individuals reaching space in 2024.
- Between ten and twelve crewed launches.Note: There have been four times that there has been ten or crewed launches in a year. 1985 saw 11 crewed launches while 1992, 1994, and 1997 each saw 10 launches.The 32+ individuals reaching orbit in 2024 will be the most individuals reaching orbit since 2009 when the Space Shuttle was still flying.
1) SpaceX will launch their Falcon 9 successfully between 130 and 150 times. I predict in Falcon Heavy and Starship will launch at least three times each in 2024.1.1) The numbers above would see SpaceX breaking several records they have set in 2023.1.2) List of orbital launch records in a year broken (list of launch vehicles involved):» Most launches by a single launch provider in a year: SpaceX (Falcon 9 Block 5, Falcon Heavy, and Starship).» Most Successful launches by a single launch provider in a year: SpaceX.» Most launches by a single launch vehicle family in a year: Falcon 9 family (Falcon 9 Block 5 and Falcon Heavy).» Most Successful launches by a single launch vehicle family in a year: Falcon 9 family.» Most launches by a single launch vehicle in a year: Falcon 9 Block 5.» Most Successful launches by a single launch vehicle in a year: Falcon 9 Block 5. Note: At least one Starship launch will be considered less than successful. There also might be a less than successful launch involving a Falcon 9 or Falcon Heavy.1.3) Record number of orbital launches from one pad: SLC-40 with 80+ Falcon 9 launches.1.4) Payload mass placed into orbit in a year:» Most satellite payload mass deployed from launch vehicle owned and operated by a single company: SpaceX.» Most satellite payload mass deployed from launch vehicle belonging to a single family: Falcon 9 family.» Most satellite payload mass deployed from a single launch vehicle: Falcon 9. Note: Starship in any of it's variants would not qualify as 'deployed mass'. Fuel transferred between two Starships (any variant) would qualify as 'deployed mass'.2) SpaceX company records will be set in the following categories.2.1) Launch pad refurbishment (time spent between two launches from a single launch pad. This will not beat the current world record between two crewed launches on the same pad.)2.2) Downtime between 3, 4, and 5 launches from the same launch pad.2.2) Fastest booster refurbishment - might not result in the least time between two launches for that booster.2.3) Time between 2, 3, 4, and 5 launches using multiple launch pads.3) Falcon 9 / Falcon Heavy events.3.1) A Falcon 9 booster will reach the 20 launch milestone in 2024. As of 25 December 2023 there are three active boosters with 17 flights each3.2) A Falcon 9 booster will be launched 10 times in 2024.3.3) Studies will begin studying the viability of launching a Falcon 9 booster 25 times.3.4) SpaceX will lose at least one Falcon 9 or Falcon Heavy side booster during either a failed landing attempt or between a successful landing and the booster being successfully transported to it's refurbishment site.3.5) SpaceX will expend more Falcon 9 boosters or Falcon Heavy side boosters than are lost due to mishaps.3.6) SpaceX will not attempt to recover any Falcon Heavy center cores.4) Starship4.1) Starship will complete a test mission in the first half of 2024.4,2) Besides the test mission, Starship will launch up to four more orbital missions from Boca Chica.4.3) Depending on the success of those missions, up to two possible Starship orbital launches from LC39A in the forth quarter of 2024. 4.4) At least one attempt to catch the Super Heavy Booster will be made during a Boca Chica launch attempt.4.5) SpaceX will attempt to recover the Starship Stage at least once.4.6) The only operational Starship missions in 2024 would involve the deployment of the full size Starlink Gen2 satellites.4.7) Attempt to transfer fuel between two Starships will be postponed to 2025.4. At least one attempt to launch Starship V2.0 will be made.5) Starlink5.1) The first Starlink constellation (gen 1) will be considered complete by the FCC before the end of Q2 2024.5.2) Test deployment of Gen2 Starlink by Starship will begin.6) SpaceX will take possession of SLC-6 and start refurbishment of that site to allow launching F9 and possibly FH. This refurbishment will last until h2 of 2025.
1) Rocket Lab will set a new company record for Electron orbital launches in 2024.2) One of Rocket Lab's three launch sites will be used for a record 8th time in a year.3) Neuton's first flight will be officially delayed until 2025.
1) At least one launch vehicle announced as being in development prior to 31 December 2019 with a first launch scheduled to occur prior to 31 December 2023 according to the same announcement will make it's first orbital launch attempt in 2024.2) At least one launch vehicle announced as being in development on or after 1 January 2020 with a first launch scheduled to occur prior to 31 December 2023 according to the same announcement will make it's first orbital launch attempt in 2024.3) Not all launch vehicles making their first orbital launch attempt in 2024 will successfully reach the intended orbit.3.1) At least one company responsible for an orbital launch vehicle that failed to reach it's intended orbit would claim that, although the mission was considered either a partial or complete failure by some members of the non-space focused press, internally that company considered it to be at least a partial success by having met what they considered the most challenging goals for that first mission4) At least one orbital launch vehicle making it debut in 2024 that reached orbit on it's first launch will have a less than successful second launch.5) At least one orbital launch vehicle that on 31 December 2023, was still publicly expected to launch in 2024 based on information provided by the manufacturer, will be either cancelled or officially be postponed to 2025 or later.6) At least one launch services provider will admit that an early (before fifth) orbital launch of their new launch vehicle didn't perform according to their expectations.
1) At least one company which had announced plans to build and launch an orbital launch vehicle will close it's doors in 2024 before it's first launch.2) At least one "startup" orbital launch vehicle company that closed it's doors between 2018 and the end of 2024 will become the focus of an official government investigation into possible misuse of investor's funds.
1) At least one but not all launch providers who announce a goal of launching their launch vehicles a certain number of orbital missions in 2024 will miss their initial goal.2) At least one but not all launch providers that increases their expectation for the total number of orbital launches, will miss that updated goal.2.1) 50/50 that launch provider will not even achieve the lower of their original goal and their revised goal.3) At least one orbital launch vehicle that on 31 December 2023 has more than 20 consecutive successful orbital launches will have a less than successful launch. This might not involve a loss of payload on that mission.4) Blue Origin will make the news more often in 2024 because of lawsuits involving them directly or indirectly, or computer animations of proposed projects than they will for their own orbital launches.5) More than one topic started in the NASASpaceFlight forum after 1 January 2024 that doesn't specifically mention SpaceX, one of it's launch vehicles, or one of it's facilities in the original post will have someone propose a solution for for a problem mentioned topic based on SpaceX and it's launch vehicles.6) More than one topic started in the NASASpaceFlight forum after 1 January 2024 will be completely off topic within a month of the original post.7) There will be a 'Predictions for 2025' topic started before the end of 2024. Many of the predictions posted by other members in this topic will not happen.9) Some correct predictions made in this topic that occur in 2024 will see a majority of those contributing to this topic expressing their desire that particular prediction hadn't come true.
ULA:- Vulcan launches [with Astrobotic Peregrine] in mid-January after a scrub or two.
I asked Google Bard for its spaceflight predictions for 2024. This is what it came up with:Predicting the future is always tricky, but here are some potential highlights for spaceflight in 2024, based on current plans and trends:Moon: Artemis II: This uncrewed lunar flyby mission, a precursor to Artemis III's crewed landing, could launch as early as May 2024. This mission will test systems and put the Orion spacecraft and Space Launch System on a trajectory towards the Moon.
what fell AI-run-amok blursing is this? "uncrewed" and "May 2024", for Artemis II?
More evidence for Proxima Centauri c