Author Topic: SpaceX wants NASA’s LC-49 for Starship Super Heavy launches  (Read 67663 times)

Offline Lobo

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Does ULA have full control over the LC-37 complex? If so, doubt they would be happy to let SpaceX take control of 37A. Not for competition sake, but having another companies launch vehicle be so close to their own assets. Same probably goes for the Space Force…

Granted, by the time 37A is built up, DIVH probably would have had its last launch…. While Jim has already stated 37B won’t be converted for Vulcan, ULA will further use that most likely to keep SpaceX out. 

Not after Delta IV flyout and then Space Force is in charge.

37A was never an option.

As far as distance to other pads, it isn't 37A to 37B, it is 37 to 40 or 41.

<snip>

It would be all of 37 that Starship would require.


Seems like rather than Starship, 37B would be better used for F9/FH as they are at least much closer in size to D4/D4H, would have vertical integration already,  and wouldn't be a terrible conversion, as is likely the case in SLC-6.
Maybe then 39A would be freed up for dedicated Starship use?  Seems like there'd be an advantage not to try to have to share operations of two different LV's right there on the same pad complex.
« Last Edit: 08/11/2023 10:52 pm by Lobo »

Offline Craigles

Here we are a year after RedLineTrain queried us for updates. I monitored
https://environmental.ksc.nasa.gov/EnvironmentalPlanning/starshipsuperheavy and I subscribed to the mailing list there but I don't see LC-49 news yet. We needn't argue about NIMBY or Space Policy in this thread; however:
 - What is the next LC-49 procedural step?
 - Was LC-49 quietly and indefinitely placed on hold?
 - Are we simply being patient so that alternatives or compromises can be arranged behind the scenes?

I don't mean to be impatient or to stir a kettle of environmental controversy but at some point lunar starship will need KSC facilities for Artemis 3.
Here we are 8 months after the public scoping period for LC-49 was supposed to have begun.  Has any change of plans been indicated?  I have searched, but haven't found anything.

https://environmental.ksc.nasa.gov/EnvironmentalPlanning/starshipsuperheavy

Project Updates
Over the past several months, KSC environmental and project management staff have engaged with SpaceX to evaluate the proposed Starship / Superheavy launch complex and the expanded operational area at the SpaceX Roberts Road site to further define the scope of the proposals. As NASA continues its comprehensive review of the project proposals, updates will be posted to this page.

Involvement Opportunities
NASA will initiate public scoping in the future to receive and collect public and interagency input on the proposals. Check back on this page for future updates.
I'd rather be here now

Offline wannamoonbase

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My fellow community members, lets not get too worked up about LC-37 or LC-49 at this time.

I think it needs to be mentioned that since Gwynne took over Starship (and Elon went down the conspiracy blackhole of Twitter) the work at LC39A slowed dramatically, Florida Starship facilities stopped, the floating platforms were sold and all energy and effort is focused on BC.

I haven't read it anywhere, but it seems to me these are her doing.  She knows it's very important to get the vehicle and system working, even at a fundamental level before sprawling out.

If and when Starship works and the facility work is complete, and SpaceX knows what they need, then expect them to pick up on these other sites.

Doing very long term items like environmental and permitting, sure, keep working that, but those are not the most exciting or public things going on.

All that said, I do really want to see what a fully realized LC-49 could look like with a mature Starship vehicle.
Wildly optimistic prediction, Superheavy recovery on IFT-4 or IFT-5

Offline alugobi

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Work at LC39 stopped, likely because they already know that they're going to have to tear out the base, and maybe the water fountain thing, too.  What they replace it with depends on how well the BC setup works.

Offline Lobo

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Work at LC39 stopped, likely because they already know that they're going to have to tear out the base, and maybe the water fountain thing, too.  What they replace it with depends on how well the BC setup works.

Although I enjoy SpaceX's push for advancement, it always seemed a bit premature to me to have started building the SS tower at LC-39A when they hadn't even launched a Starship with booster from Boca Chica yet.  Maybe building copies of the final working design would be better than building copies of the preliminary design.

Offline spacenut

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Work at 39A for Starship stopped before Musk bought Twitter. 

Offline edzieba

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Work at LC39 stopped, likely because they already know that they're going to have to tear out the base, and maybe the water fountain thing, too.  What they replace it with depends on how well the BC setup works.
LC-39A was already being built out for the deluge plate. Several of the tanks in the water farm at BC were originally installed at LC-39A, and were subsequently removed from LC-39A and barged to BC.

Online catdlr

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Work at LC39 stopped, likely because they already know that they're going to have to tear out the base, and maybe the water fountain thing, too.  What they replace it with depends on how well the BC setup works.
LC-39A was already being built out for the deluge plate. Several of the tanks in the water farm at BC were originally installed at LC-39A, and were subsequently removed from LC-39A and barged to BC.

Nope,  No plate all cement, and not enough pilings.  The water manifold ring is a completely different design that will probably be replaced with the BC one if certified.  Elon was a bit premature to start building out 39A. 
Tony De La Rosa, ...I'm no Feline Dealer!! I move mountains.  but I'm better known for "I think it's highly sexual." Japanese to English Translation.

Offline edzieba

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Work at LC39 stopped, likely because they already know that they're going to have to tear out the base, and maybe the water fountain thing, too.  What they replace it with depends on how well the BC setup works.
LC-39A was already being built out for the deluge plate. Several of the tanks in the water farm at BC were originally installed at LC-39A, and were subsequently removed from LC-39A and barged to BC.

Nope,  No plate all cement, and not enough pilings.  The water manifold ring is a completely different design that will probably be replaced with the BC one if certified.  Elon was a bit premature to start building out 39A.
Since LC-39A had not even reached the point of having the OLM ring installed, let alone any water plumbing extended to the pad, nobody outside of SpaceX have seen the 'water manifold ring' that will be installed there so concluding it to be 'completely different; is premature at best. Lack of visibility compared to BC - occasional flyovers with the pad surface obscured by terrain due to flight restrictions, occasional bus tours with pad surface obscured by terrain due to fence perimeter - also means 'not enough pilings' is also pure guesswork.
On the other hand, the tank farm being sufficiently identical that literally the same tanks are being used is rather a dead giveaway. In addition the water tank farm footprints at BC and LC-39A 9now vacated of tanks) also match. See attached scaled aerial photographs (taken from Harry Stranger's Soar.earth page).

Offline meekGee

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Work at LC39 stopped, likely because they already know that they're going to have to tear out the base, and maybe the water fountain thing, too.  What they replace it with depends on how well the BC setup works.
LC-39A was already being built out for the deluge plate. Several of the tanks in the water farm at BC were originally installed at LC-39A, and were subsequently removed from LC-39A and barged to BC.

Nope,  No plate all cement, and not enough pilings.  The water manifold ring is a completely different design that will probably be replaced with the BC one if certified.  Elon was a bit premature to start building out 39A.
Since the timespan between pulling the trigger and seeing hardware on site is easily a year, (and same goes for ordering one of a kind tooling) then optimal management requires taking risks like that - otherwise you sign up for a very prolonged schedule.

Think about decisions like ordering another ASDS, or starting towards another battery factory - expensive decisions with even multi-year latencies.

Can't really judge the decisions using hindsight - you don't know how many premature decisions were made and turned out to be time (=money) savers.
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Online catdlr

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Work at LC39 stopped, likely because they already know that they're going to have to tear out the base, and maybe the water fountain thing, too.  What they replace it with depends on how well the BC setup works.
LC-39A was already being built out for the deluge plate. Several of the tanks in the water farm at BC were originally installed at LC-39A, and were subsequently removed from LC-39A and barged to BC.

Nope,  No plate all cement, and not enough pilings.  The water manifold ring is a completely different design that will probably be replaced with the BC one if certified.  Elon was a bit premature to start building out 39A.
Since LC-39A had not even reached the point of having the OLM ring installed, let alone any water plumbing extended to the pad, nobody outside of SpaceX have seen the 'water manifold ring' that will be installed there so concluding it to be 'completely different; is premature at best. Lack of visibility compared to BC - occasional flyovers with the pad surface obscured by terrain due to flight restrictions, occasional bus tours with pad surface obscured by terrain due to fence perimeter - also means 'not enough pilings' is also pure guesswork.
On the other hand, the tank farm being sufficiently identical that literally the same tanks are being used is rather a dead giveaway. In addition the water tank farm footprints at BC and LC-39A 9now vacated of tanks) also match. See attached scaled aerial photographs (taken from Harry Stranger's Soar.earth page).
Agreed.
My comment was based on per Zack's recent video (see below).  Without absolute direct overhead flyover visuals and constant video monitoring, we would not be able to obtain, my statement was hasty. I made my comment based on the current set of water manifolds that got lowered into the pit around the OLM legs captured on video some time ago, which are designed contrary to what was installed per Zack's recent video (BC).  Additional pilings and a piling head similar to BC have not been identified as completed before the current water manifolds were installed, but have not been covered over yet.  Yet the water tank farm is a replication of the one completed at BC.

https://youtube.com/clip/UgkxsPXFZ-mJfVKoAfVaxMvA6zGd7eAX0zD4
« Last Edit: 08/16/2023 12:31 am by catdlr »
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Offline pyromatter

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https://talkoftitusville.com/2024/01/22/nasa-no-activities-underway-to-build-lc-49/

Quote
They replied to us on January 18, 2024 and said that “[NASA] currently [does] not have any activities underway at LC-49.”

Quote
NASA added that, “all previous activities there have been suspended, including anything involving any commercial companies. We’re not currently working any NEPA or environmental actions. KSC did complete an environmental assessment in 2018-19 for the development and operations of the site, which included the construction of the existing launch pad.”

Bummer. They need to finish building that area out.

Offline spacenut

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 Do they have enough room at 39A to put two launch towers in for Starship?  Seems like they could on either side of the original pad, especially if they do the milk stool type launch pad. 

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