Author Topic: SpaceX lease SLC-6  (Read 43571 times)

Offline edzieba

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #40 on: 04/25/2023 06:24 pm »
Less than overall height, the question would be payload adapter height. That's the level that needs to match in order for Falcon to make use of the existing cleanroom setup. There's some wiggle-room with adjusting the height of the launch mount itself, but otherwise if PLA height is too far off then some more major structural works would need to occur than just raising the roof height (the roof only supports itself, the cleanroom gantry supports a large human-occupied structure with payload lifting and handling equipment).

There isn't a clean room on the SLC-6 MST.  There are enclosures that can go over fairing doors to provide clean access to the fairing interior.
Sorry, you're correct. The handling room itself is not clean.

Offline Alexphysics

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #41 on: 04/25/2023 06:32 pm »
Because launches to polar orbits are far less frequent. I don't see them needing two pads on the west coast and hence wanting the costs. Vacating SLC-4 once the lease is up seems the most likely outcome imo.

Wrong.  They are trying to fly Starlink as much as they can.  They already have moved east coast missions to the west coast.

Jim is right. SpaceX is expanding a lot their teams at Vandenberg and launch rates are only going up and up, another pad makes sense to drive up cadence even further. As long as they can fly Starlinks from there, they will launch from Vandenberg and at a high rate. Expect tons and tons of V2 Mini launches, those aren't just some passing fad, they're here to stay for a long while.

Offline alugobi

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #42 on: 04/25/2023 06:45 pm »
I wonder if they'll build a landing pad there.

Offline Robotbeat

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #43 on: 04/25/2023 06:51 pm »
When would the first launch be? This year?
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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #44 on: 04/25/2023 06:55 pm »
Quote
Jim is right. SpaceX is expanding a lot their teams at Vandenberg and launch rates are only going up and up, another pad makes sense to drive up cadence even further. As long as they can fly Starlinks from there, they will launch from Vandenberg and at a high rate. Expect tons and tons of V2 Mini launches, those aren't just some passing fad, they're here to stay for a long while.

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Offline Jim

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #45 on: 04/25/2023 06:58 pm »
When would the first launch be? This year?

Nah, too much mods to be done.  Have to build a TEL and redo all the concrete pad base.

Offline wannamoonbase

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #46 on: 04/25/2023 07:20 pm »
Because launches to polar orbits are far less frequent. I don't see them needing two pads on the west coast and hence wanting the costs. Vacating SLC-4 once the lease is up seems the most likely outcome imo.

Wrong.  They are trying to fly Starlink as much as they can.  They already have moved east coast missions to the west coast.

Jim is right. SpaceX is expanding a lot their teams at Vandenberg and launch rates are only going up and up, another pad makes sense to drive up cadence even further. As long as they can fly Starlinks from there, they will launch from Vandenberg and at a high rate. Expect tons and tons of V2 Mini launches, those aren't just some passing fad, they're here to stay for a long while.

VSFB seems to have better weather too, Florida hurricane season can be troublesome.
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Offline catdlr

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #47 on: 04/25/2023 07:23 pm »
When would the first launch be? This year?

Nah, too much mods to be done.  Have to build a TEL and redo all the concrete pad base.


Thanks, Jim for jumping in.  You are the best source of info at this facility.
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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #48 on: 04/25/2023 07:34 pm »
Iím surprised itís for FalconÖÖ. So is this SpaceX moving to 6 from 4? Addition to 4? Or eventually gets announced itís really for starship?

Vandy doesnít seem to have much activity to need two F9 pads. Unless SpaceX plans to up the Starlink launches out of Vandy.
Also the DoD requires vertical payload integration for most of the interesting payloads in the pipeline that might need extended time on the launch pad. Hence the reason for an additional Falcon pad, since SpaceX is already maxing out the SLC-4E pad.

Forgot about that requirement.  Using that existing 6-SLC integration structure, the FH can have the payload mounted while the FH is in the required upright position without the need to do so at the Cape (at least for Polar orbits).  I don't have the height measurements between the D5H and FH, someone may have to get that for us.

Delta IV Heavy, at about 72 meters,  is slightly taller than the Falcon 9 / Heavy at 70 meters.

Falcon Heavy with an extended fairing would be slightly taller than the Delta IV Heavy, at about 73.5 meters.
Less than overall height, the question would be payload adapter height. That's the level that needs to match in order for Falcon to make use of the existing cleanroom setup. There's some wiggle-room with adjusting the height of the launch mount itself, but otherwise if PLA height is too far off then some more major structural works would need to occur than just raising the roof height (the roof only supports itself, the cleanroom gantry supports a large human-occupied structure with payload lifting and handling equipment).

Oh that's a good point. Per the Delta IV User's Guide, the Delta IV payload level is approx. 175 ft. / 53 meters.

Falcon 9 / Heavy payload level is about 5 or so meters higher.
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Offline Alexphysics

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #49 on: 04/25/2023 07:59 pm »
Because launches to polar orbits are far less frequent. I don't see them needing two pads on the west coast and hence wanting the costs. Vacating SLC-4 once the lease is up seems the most likely outcome imo.

Wrong.  They are trying to fly Starlink as much as they can.  They already have moved east coast missions to the west coast.

Jim is right. SpaceX is expanding a lot their teams at Vandenberg and launch rates are only going up and up, another pad makes sense to drive up cadence even further. As long as they can fly Starlinks from there, they will launch from Vandenberg and at a high rate. Expect tons and tons of V2 Mini launches, those aren't just some passing fad, they're here to stay for a long while.

VSFB seems to have better weather too, Florida hurricane season can be troublesome.

Well on average yes but this year is quite the anomaly. Lots of bad weather hitting California and Florida has been stable for the most part

Online Zed_Noir

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #50 on: 04/25/2023 08:50 pm »
Presuming they continue to refurbish the cores at Hawthorne. Will SpaceX build a hangar or hangars at the SLC-6 site to stored cores and upper stages?

Offline meekGee

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #51 on: 04/25/2023 09:37 pm »
Because launches to polar orbits are far less frequent. I don't see them needing two pads on the west coast and hence wanting the costs. Vacating SLC-4 once the lease is up seems the most likely outcome imo.

Wrong.  They are trying to fly Starlink as much as they can.  They already have moved east coast missions to the west coast.

Jim is right. SpaceX is expanding a lot their teams at Vandenberg and launch rates are only going up and up, another pad makes sense to drive up cadence even further. As long as they can fly Starlinks from there, they will launch from Vandenberg and at a high rate. Expect tons and tons of V2 Mini launches, those aren't just some passing fad, they're here to stay for a long while.

VSFB seems to have better weather too, Florida hurricane season can be troublesome.

Well on average yes but this year is quite the anomaly. Lots of bad weather hitting California and Florida has been stable for the most part
We're done with all that. It's all flowers birds and butterflies right now.
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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #52 on: 04/25/2023 09:44 pm »
Because launches to polar orbits are far less frequent. I don't see them needing two pads on the west coast and hence wanting the costs. Vacating SLC-4 once the lease is up seems the most likely outcome imo.

Wrong.  They are trying to fly Starlink as much as they can.  They already have moved east coast missions to the west coast.

Jim is right. SpaceX is expanding a lot their teams at Vandenberg and launch rates are only going up and up, another pad makes sense to drive up cadence even further. As long as they can fly Starlinks from there, they will launch from Vandenberg and at a high rate. Expect tons and tons of V2 Mini launches, those aren't just some passing fad, they're here to stay for a long while.

VSFB seems to have better weather too, Florida hurricane season can be troublesome.

Well on average yes but this year is quite the anomaly. Lots of bad weather hitting California and Florida has been stable for the most part
We're done with all that. It's all flowers birds and butterflies right now.

And a ton of pollen in the air. And a lot of nice greenery that will be tinder for this year's fire season once everything has dried out from the summer heat.
"One bit of advice: it is important to view knowledge as sort of a semantic tree -- make sure you understand the fundamental principles, ie the trunk and big branches, before you get into the leaves/details or there is nothing for them to hang on to." - Elon Musk
"There are lies, damned lies, and launch schedules." - Larry J

Offline Asteroza

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #53 on: 04/25/2023 11:45 pm »
Wonder if this is a half and half scenario, where they bring SLC-6 up quickly for F9 and F9H (no Starship prep work), then do work on SLC-4? What would SpaceX want to do at SLC-4 that would require downtime which SLC-6 could cover for?

Offline Tomness

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #54 on: 04/26/2023 03:33 am »
When would the first launch be? This year?

Nah, too much mods to be done.  Have to build a TEL and redo all the concrete pad base.

My as well build a new TEL too for SLC-4 since it was built for FH but I doubt it could fly it at the moment. With out a new one.

Offline meekGee

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #55 on: 04/26/2023 03:41 am »
Because launches to polar orbits are far less frequent. I don't see them needing two pads on the west coast and hence wanting the costs. Vacating SLC-4 once the lease is up seems the most likely outcome imo.

Wrong.  They are trying to fly Starlink as much as they can.  They already have moved east coast missions to the west coast.

Jim is right. SpaceX is expanding a lot their teams at Vandenberg and launch rates are only going up and up, another pad makes sense to drive up cadence even further. As long as they can fly Starlinks from there, they will launch from Vandenberg and at a high rate. Expect tons and tons of V2 Mini launches, those aren't just some passing fad, they're here to stay for a long while.

VSFB seems to have better weather too, Florida hurricane season can be troublesome.

Well on average yes but this year is quite the anomaly. Lots of bad weather hitting California and Florida has been stable for the most part
We're done with all that. It's all flowers birds and butterflies right now.

And a ton of pollen in the air. And a lot of nice greenery that will be tinder for this year's fire season once everything has dried out from the summer heat.
Yeah but those shouldn't affect the launch schedule.

Also shhh, you're disturbing the butterflies
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Offline woods170

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #56 on: 04/26/2023 08:26 am »
Super stoked, this is perfect! I guess BO will eventually lease SLC-4 for New Glenn, called it a couple days ago:

Ideally you'd have BO and SpaceX swapping SLC-6 and SLC-4, that way you can have both Starship and New Glenn launching from Vandenberg.

No, that is not it.   They have two pads on the east coast for high flight rates, why not two on the west coast?

Because launches to polar orbits are far less frequent. I don't see them needing two pads on the west coast and hence wanting the costs. Vacating SLC-4 once the lease is up seems the most likely outcome imo.

You are wrong however. SpaceX has NO intention to abandon SLC-4. SpaceX has already begun to significantly increase the number of launches from Vandenberg. And that number will continue to climb. A second pad there is very much needed.

Offline EL_DIABLO

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #57 on: 04/26/2023 10:35 am »
Because launches to polar orbits are far less frequent. I don't see them needing two pads on the west coast and hence wanting the costs. Vacating SLC-4 once the lease is up seems the most likely outcome imo.

Wrong.  They are trying to fly Starlink as much as they can.  They already have moved east coast missions to the west coast.

Because launches to polar orbits are far less frequent. I don't see them needing two pads on the west coast and hence wanting the costs. Vacating SLC-4 once the lease is up seems the most likely outcome imo.

Wrong.  They are trying to fly Starlink as much as they can.  They already have moved east coast missions to the west coast.

Jim is right. SpaceX is expanding a lot their teams at Vandenberg and launch rates are only going up and up, another pad makes sense to drive up cadence even further. As long as they can fly Starlinks from there, they will launch from Vandenberg and at a high rate. Expect tons and tons of V2 Mini launches, those aren't just some passing fad, they're here to stay for a long while.

Super stoked, this is perfect! I guess BO will eventually lease SLC-4 for New Glenn, called it a couple days ago:

Ideally you'd have BO and SpaceX swapping SLC-6 and SLC-4, that way you can have both Starship and New Glenn launching from Vandenberg.

No, that is not it.   They have two pads on the east coast for high flight rates, why not two on the west coast?

Because launches to polar orbits are far less frequent. I don't see them needing two pads on the west coast and hence wanting the costs. Vacating SLC-4 once the lease is up seems the most likely outcome imo.

You are wrong however. SpaceX has NO intention to abandon SLC-4. SpaceX has already begun to significantly increase the number of launches from Vandenberg. And that number will continue to climb. A second pad there is very much needed.

You guys are talking short term while I'm talking long term when Starship is an operational rocket, hence why I said eventually and not immediately.

Offline edzieba

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #58 on: 04/26/2023 10:48 am »
Taking over SLC-6 means any pad mods for Falcon Heavy, vertical integration, and higher launch cadences (e.g. the newer more armoured Strongback design that can rapidly retract at t=0) can take place without interrupting operations at SLC-4 for the several months required.

Any Starship decisions can be made once both Falcon pads are up and operating: Starship at Boca Chica is the priority over Starshap at the cape, which itself is a priority over Atarship at Vandenberg or elsewhere. Starship buildout is a clean pad with no shared Falcon infrastructure, so either a new pad built within the grounds of SLC-4, another unused launch complex, or a brand new launch complex.

Offline Robotbeat

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Re: SpaceX lease SLC-6
« Reply #59 on: 04/26/2023 12:59 pm »
I would think they may want to share vertical integration capability with Falcon at SLC-6, plus I think the terrain is more suitable for adding a Starship pad there ala LC-39Aís Starship pad. (Plus SLC-6 was made for Shuttle missions, so the overall thrust and keep out zones are at least the right order of magnitude for a Starship pad.)
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