Author Topic: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION  (Read 461342 times)

Offline Chris Bergin

DISCUSSION thread for STP-2 mission.

NSF Threads for STP-2 : Discussion / Updates / ASDS / Party
NSF Articles for STP-2 :
https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/?s=STP-2

Successful launch June 25, 2019 on Falcon Heavy from LC-39A at Cape Canaveral at 02:30 EDT (07:30 UTC).  Side boosters 1052.2 and 1053.2 successfully performed RTLS landings at LZ-1.  Center booster 1057.1 unsuccessfully attempted a downrange landing on the ASDS.  The fairing catcher ship Ms. Tree made its first successful catch of a fairing half.  The Air Force said the Integrated Payload Stack is 3700kg.

SpaceX mission page: https://www.spacex.com/stp-2



Posts with payload lists: Post 1Post 2.  This is also the ELaNa XV CubeSat mission for NASA

Possible deployment locations:
   Oculus, cubesats : 300 x 860km at 28.5 deg?
   Prox-1, NPSat, OTB, GPIM, COSMIC-2 : 720 x 720km at 24 deg?
   DSX : 6000 x 12000km at 43 deg?
   "Propulsive passivation" : move second stage away from DSX, passivate and leave in MEO?

Other SpaceX resources on NASASpaceflight:
   SpaceX News Articles (Recent)  /   SpaceX News Articles from 2006 (Including numerous exclusive Elon interviews)
   SpaceX Dragon Articles  /  SpaceX Missions Section (with Launch Manifest and info on past and future missions)
   L2 SpaceX Section




http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2012/12/spacex-foot-eelv-door-double-launch-contract-win/

UGordan with the find on the description of STP-2 payload: https://www.fbo.gov/utils/view?id=36de6af7670d2636c8c195173dd500e1
« Last Edit: 06/25/2019 12:56 pm by gongora »
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Offline simonbp

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #1 on: 12/06/2012 02:05 am »
Wow, this looks like a complicated mission. Two primary spacecraft inserted into different orbits (one LEO, one 12,000 km) and a ton of secondaries. Looks like every spare spacecraft the USAF could think of...

Offline Lee Jay

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #2 on: 12/06/2012 02:30 am »
Interesting article.  Thanks!

"With these two missions supporting the EELV certification process for both the Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy, SpaceX noted they will be able to prove the Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy launch vehicles are designed for exceptional reliability, meeting the stringent US Air Force requirements for the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) program."

Exceptional reliability?  To me, that would mean better than ULA, and that would require a very long string of successful missions, not just one successful demonstrator.  Is this just marketing/PR speak from SpaceX?

Offline Lars_J

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #3 on: 12/06/2012 04:07 am »
Of course it is marketing speak - until they can back it up.

But this will certainly be an interesting mission. It doesn't sound like a something pushing the lift capability to the limit, but they'll certainly give everything else a workout.

Offline spectre9

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #4 on: 12/06/2012 04:14 am »
Very cool!

Great article.

It's good to see support coming for Falcon Heavy.

Stacking all the payloads together is going to be the way to do it until somebody is willing to utilise the maximum payload to GTO. I think it's 12 tons? Not sure. Does anybody really know? With or without Merlin 1D and tank stretch  :P

Offline cleonard

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #5 on: 12/06/2012 04:19 am »
It's a wonderful opportunity for Spacex, but they need to execute.  It might seem like it's a long way off in 2015, but it's really not that far off for a vehicle that has not flown yet.

Offline Jason1701

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #6 on: 12/06/2012 04:19 am »
Very cool!

Great article.

It's good to see support coming for Falcon Heavy.

Stacking all the payloads together is going to be the way to do it until somebody is willing to utilise the maximum payload to GTO. I think it's 12 tons? Not sure. Does anybody really know? With or without Merlin 1D and tank stretch  :P

The quoted FH figures for the last few years have all been with 1D and stretch, but not always admitting that.

Offline Comga

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #7 on: 12/06/2012 04:35 am »
It's a wonderful opportunity for Spacex, but they need to execute.  It might seem like it's a long way off in 2015, but it's really not that far off for a vehicle that has not flown yet.

and from a pad whose construction has not been started.
I will trust Chris that this confirms that SpaceX will launch the FH from the East coast using LC-40. 
This will be interesting.
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #8 on: 12/06/2012 09:00 am »
At the time the type was officially announced, it was implied very strongly that DoD or USAF had urged SpaceX to proceed with Falcon Heavy more quickly than they had initially planned.  I wonder if STP-2 was the mission that they had in mind, even then?
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Offline john smith 19

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #9 on: 12/06/2012 09:28 am »
But this will certainly be an interesting mission. It doesn't sound like a something pushing the lift capability to the limit, but they'll certainly give everything else a workout.

IIRC the "on ramp" for new launchers (reported on nasaspaceflight.com previously) has a scale of mission reliability. I suspect these payloads are not at top end so the customers can take the hit if it does not work out.

This is a huge opportunity to go head to head with ULA and start to build credibility and the all important "mission assurance" that these customers want.

I'm presuming this won't be the first F9H launch and even if it's in Q415 that's only (best case) 23 months away, which is not long for a 2nd launch of a new LV.
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Offline Chris Bergin

It's a wonderful opportunity for Spacex, but they need to execute.  It might seem like it's a long way off in 2015, but it's really not that far off for a vehicle that has not flown yet.

and from a pad whose construction has not been started.
I will trust Chris that this confirms that SpaceX will launch the FH from the East coast using LC-40. 
This will be interesting.

Yep, the plan is to have a Falcon Heavy hanger and ramp, clocked 90 degrees (could be 180, but the Cape guys say 90) from the Falcon 9 Hanger and ramp. Other options include 39A - I just made Jim frown ;D -or a new pad.....if they don't need it, they don't need it.

Was pretty specific in the presser too: "The DSCOVR mission will be launched aboard a Falcon 9 and is currently slated for late 2014, while STP-2 will be launched aboard the Falcon Heavy and is targeted for mid-2015. Both are expected to launch from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida.".
« Last Edit: 12/06/2012 09:36 am by Chris Bergin »
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It's a wonderful opportunity for Spacex, but they need to execute.  It might seem like it's a long way off in 2015, but it's really not that far off for a vehicle that has not flown yet.

and from a pad whose construction has not been started.
I will trust Chris that this confirms that SpaceX will launch the FH from the East coast using LC-40. 
This will be interesting.

Yep, the plan is to have a Falcon Heavy hanger and ramp, clocked 90 degrees (could be 180, but the Cape guys say 90) from the Falcon 9 Hanger and ramp. Other options include 39A or a new pad.

Was pretty specific in the presser too: "The DSCOVR mission will be launched aboard a Falcon 9 and is currently slated for late 2014, while STP-2 will be launched aboard the Falcon Heavy and is targeted for mid-2015. Both are expected to launch from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida.".

But that sentence does not exclude the chances of building a new pad aside the current pad at SLC-40 (I've seen someone here call it "SLC-40B"), no?
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Offline Halidon

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #12 on: 12/06/2012 09:49 am »
At the time the type was officially announced, it was implied very strongly that DoD or USAF had urged SpaceX to proceed with Falcon Heavy more quickly than they had initially planned.  I wonder if STP-2 was the mission that they had in mind, even then?
I don't think this specific mission was on their minds, I think they pushed SpaceX to accelerate FH because F1v1 wasn't meeting their requirements in general. DoD's high valure payloads are big and may be getting bigger.

Offline Chris Bergin

It's a wonderful opportunity for Spacex, but they need to execute.  It might seem like it's a long way off in 2015, but it's really not that far off for a vehicle that has not flown yet.

and from a pad whose construction has not been started.
I will trust Chris that this confirms that SpaceX will launch the FH from the East coast using LC-40. 
This will be interesting.

Yep, the plan is to have a Falcon Heavy hanger and ramp, clocked 90 degrees (could be 180, but the Cape guys say 90) from the Falcon 9 Hanger and ramp. Other options include 39A or a new pad.

Was pretty specific in the presser too: "The DSCOVR mission will be launched aboard a Falcon 9 and is currently slated for late 2014, while STP-2 will be launched aboard the Falcon Heavy and is targeted for mid-2015. Both are expected to launch from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida.".

But that sentence does not exclude the chances of building a new pad aside the current pad at SLC-40 (I've seen someone here call it "SLC-40B"), no?

Sure, but I know the "plan" is to launch both from the same spot. What they eventually decide is "TBA". Point is, "SLC-40".
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Offline woods170

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #14 on: 12/06/2012 10:39 am »
It's a wonderful opportunity for Spacex, but they need to execute.  It might seem like it's a long way off in 2015, but it's really not that far off for a vehicle that has not flown yet.

and from a pad whose construction has not been started.
I will trust Chris that this confirms that SpaceX will launch the FH from the East coast using LC-40. 
This will be interesting.
Construction for the combined Falcon 9 / Falcon Heavy launchpad at Vandenburg has been on-going for some time now.

Offline LouScheffer

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #15 on: 12/06/2012 11:40 am »
Wow, this looks like a complicated mission. Two primary spacecraft inserted into different orbits (one LEO, one 12,000 km) and a ton of secondaries. Looks like every spare spacecraft the USAF could think of...
From the document:

Insertion Orbit #1

Deliver the IPS to a circular orbit with an orbital altitude of 720 km and an orbital inclination of 24º. Deploy only the COSMIC-2 payload set, up to six APLs (TBR), and actuate up to eight P-PODs (TBR).

Insertion Orbit #2

Deliver the IPS (with remaining payloads) to the elliptical orbit with a perigee of 6,000 km, apogee of 12,000 km, and an orbital inclination of 45º. Deploy the DSX payload followed by remaining APLs and actuate remaining P-PODs. After deployment of these payloads, the LV shall enter a coast phase of [3 hours threshold, 5 hours objective]. After the coast phase, the LV shall execute an upper stage restart with a minimum duration of 5 seconds (TBR).

This looks like at least 5 burns of the second stage to me, over many hours.  #1, get into orbit with a 720 km apogee, 24 inclination.  #2, circularize at 720, release first payload.  #3, Next equator crossing, boost to a 6000 km perigee.  Coast until apogee, #4, boost to a 12000x6000 orbit and change plane to 45º.  Wait the required 3 hours for the final stage restart (#5).

I'm not an orbital mechanics guy, but you might get less delta-v by doing the last plane change at the 12,000 km apogee, rather than including it as part of burn #4.  That would be yet another burn, and a few more hours.

The Russian missions to GTO from their high latitude Proton launches are the only other ones I can think of with this many restarts, and they've had reliability problems over the years.   It's a lot of successive events, all of which must go right, and no alternatives....

Offline Jim

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #16 on: 12/06/2012 12:51 pm »
At the time the type was officially announced, it was implied very strongly that DoD or USAF had urged SpaceX to proceed with Falcon Heavy more quickly than they had initially planned.  I wonder if STP-2 was the mission that they had in mind, even then?
I don't think this specific mission was on their minds, I think they pushed SpaceX to accelerate FH because F1v1 wasn't meeting their requirements in general. DoD's high valure payloads are big and may be getting bigger.

Huh?  Unwarranted speculation.  This is just a  mission made up to test the FH.  There is no pushing from the DOD either.  The onus is on Spacex to provide the vehicle, the DOD was not looking for another one.

Offline padrat

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #17 on: 12/06/2012 12:52 pm »
It's a wonderful opportunity for Spacex, but they need to execute.  It might seem like it's a long way off in 2015, but it's really not that far off for a vehicle that has not flown yet.

and from a pad whose construction has not been started.
I will trust Chris that this confirms that SpaceX will launch the FH from the East coast using LC-40. 
This will be interesting.

Yep, the plan is to have a Falcon Heavy hanger and ramp, clocked 90 degrees (could be 180, but the Cape guys say 90) from the Falcon 9 Hanger and ramp. Other options include 39A - I just made Jim frown ;D -or a new pad.....if they don't need it, they don't need it.

Was pretty specific in the presser too: "The DSCOVR mission will be launched aboard a Falcon 9 and is currently slated for late 2014, while STP-2 will be launched aboard the Falcon Heavy and is targeted for mid-2015. Both are expected to launch from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida.".
All I'm saying is that I'm hearing decisions for the Heavy pad havent been finalized yet. 39A would be nice but so far it comes with a lot of red tape, which I'm sure Spacex would like to avoid....
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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #18 on: 12/06/2012 01:00 pm »
Well, sounds like SpaceX will have it's hands full managing the boil off. Hats off if they pull off this Hat Trick.
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Offline avollhar

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Re: SpaceX FH: STP-2 : LC-39A : June 25, 2019 - DISCUSSION
« Reply #19 on: 12/06/2012 01:04 pm »
This looks like at least 5 burns of the second stage to me, over many hours.  #1, get into orbit with a 720 km apogee, 24 inclination.  #2, circularize at 720, release first payload.  #3, Next equator crossing, boost to a 6000 km perigee.  Coast until apogee, #4, boost to a 12000x6000 orbit and change plane to 45º.  Wait the required 3 hours for the final stage restart (#5).

I'm not an orbital mechanics guy, but you might get less delta-v by doing the last plane change at the 12,000 km apogee, rather than including it as part of burn #4.  That would be yet another burn, and a few more hours.


I am no orbital mechanics guy either, but had to do some math a few years ago. Indeed, changing planes is most efficient with lowest orbital velocity: high apogee, low perigee.

Therefore my best guess is:

- Launch into 720x250km transfer orbit 24 deg inclination. The 4.5 deg difference to KSC latitude could be included already.
- Burn 1: 720x720km, 24 deg incl.
- Burn 2: 720x12000km, 24 deg incl.
- Burn 3: 720x12000km, plane change to 45 deg incl.
- Burn 4: 6000x12000km, 45 deg incl.
- Burn 5: as required by contract

I don't think there is a way around separating Burn 2/3. But 3/4 could be possibly joined as they both happen at apogee.

As others noted: a hell of a launch sequence..

Tags: Falcon Heavy SpaceX 
 

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