Author Topic: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program  (Read 107830 times)

Offline gongora

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #200 on: 02/08/2020 07:27 pm »
Saving a copy of the Rideshare User's Guide for posterity.

Offline high road

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #201 on: 03/05/2020 09:55 pm »

While I was checking for interesting launches this month, I noticed that one of the satellites on SpaceX' first smallsat rideshare mission is from Capella Space, who have also ordered (a) launch(es) from RocketLabs. Now how about that as a hopeful sign that there's room for more than one player?

Offline abaddon

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #202 on: 03/09/2020 12:51 pm »
Momentus to offer last-miles service from SpaceX rideshare flights: https://spacenews.com/momentus-spacex-rideshare/
Quote
Momentus purchased rides on five SpaceX Falcon 9 smallSat rideshare missions in 2020 and 2021 to showcase the ability of its Vigoride in-space transportation vehicle to move customer satellites 300 to 1,200 kilometers beyond the drop-off point, the Santa Clara, California, company announced March 9.

More at the link.

Offline abaddon

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #203 on: 03/09/2020 01:02 pm »
From the article, it cites an aggregate mass of 350kg and separately indicates that Vigoride payload capacity was increased to 350kg by moving to an ESPA Grande port.  According to https://sspd.gsfc.nasa.gov/workshop_2010/day3/Joe_Maly/CSA_ESPA_GSFC-OOS_26Mar2010revA.pdf, ESPA Grande ports have a 300kg mass limit.  Not sure where the 350kg is coming from and what the mass of Vigoride itself is, but making a guess it is 50kg, the SpaceX calculator gives $2 million for the price to SSO.  Presumably that is what Momentus would pay, or maybe they get a discount due to booking multiple rides.  Assuming they sign enough payloads, they should still be able to make a nice profit while charging a great price.

With planned frequent launches and now with the possibility of tailored orbits for what is likely to be a very good price, this could really put the pinch on dedicated smallsat launchers...

Offline gongora

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #204 on: 03/09/2020 01:19 pm »
Vigoride is 150+ kilograms (the first one they're testing on a Soyuz flight is 151kg dry plus 6kg propellant, which probably isn't a full load, plus payloads).  That would make a Vigoride with 350kg of payloads a bit over 500kg total.  If SpaceX is making or at least customizing their own payload adapters then the specifications for an industry standard port may not apply.

Offline gongora

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #205 on: 03/09/2020 01:21 pm »
Momentus to offer last-miles service from SpaceX rideshare flights: https://spacenews.com/momentus-spacex-rideshare/
Quote
Momentus purchased rides on five SpaceX Falcon 9 smallSat rideshare missions in 2020 and 2021 to showcase the ability of its Vigoride in-space transportation vehicle to move customer satellites 300 to 1,200 kilometers beyond the drop-off point, the Santa Clara, California, company announced March 9.

More at the link.

The press release from Momentus says they booked six flights, five to SSO and one to mid-inclination LEO (Starlink flight).
https://momentus.space/2020/03/09/momentus-spacex/
« Last Edit: 03/09/2020 01:22 pm by gongora »

Online scr00chy

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #206 on: 03/09/2020 10:24 pm »
I did some digging based on the Space News article and seems to me that the newly announced satellites flying on Vigoride are the Slovak CScube and Hungarian RADCUBE.

I found a 2020 launch date for RADCUBE and it should be SSO, so that means it should fly on the first dedicated SSO mission. CScube is planned to launch in 2021 but Momentus has more than one mission booked that year, so it's unclear which of those would CScube launch on.

I've updated my list of SpaceX smallsat launches accordingly.

Offline jpo234

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #207 on: 05/13/2020 07:41 pm »
https://momentus.space/2020/05/13/sen-earthtv/

Other reports mention a mid '21 launch on a SpaceX rideshare mission.
You want to be inspired by things. You want to wake up in the morning and think the future is going to be great. That's what being a spacefaring civilization is all about. It's about believing in the future and believing the future will be better than the past. And I can't think of anything more exciting than being out there among the stars.

Offline M.E.T.

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #208 on: 05/19/2020 03:49 am »
As I have been saying, SpaceX is absolutely going to be a major competitor for Rocketlab and all other smallsat launchers:

https://twitter.com/SciGuySpace/status/1262490446888161281?s=20




« Last Edit: 05/19/2020 03:51 am by M.E.T. »

Offline woods170

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #209 on: 05/19/2020 09:21 am »
As I have been saying, SpaceX is absolutely going to be a major competitor for Rocketlab and all other smallsat launchers:

https://twitter.com/SciGuySpace/status/1262490446888161281?s=20

Sandra Erwin's write-up at SN:
https://spacenews.com/spacex-rideshare-program-putting-downward-pressure-on-prices/

Offline matthewkantar

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #210 on: 05/19/2020 02:05 pm »
Planet's sats are 120 kgs, they are launching six of them on an upcoming Starlink launch. Any guesses on pricing? Planet sats are 120 kgs each. The rideshare program charges a million dollars for up to 200 kgs plus $5000/kg over 200 kilograms.

Does Planet pay 6 million dollars, or 120kg X 6 = 720kg, 3.6 million dollars?

Who pays to develop the dispenser?

Offline M.E.T.

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #211 on: 05/19/2020 02:33 pm »
Planet's sats are 120 kgs, they are launching six of them on an upcoming Starlink launch. Any guesses on pricing? Planet sats are 120 kgs each. The rideshare program charges a million dollars for up to 200 kgs plus $5000/kg over 200 kilograms.

Does Planet pay 6 million dollars, or 120kg X 6 = 720kg, 3.6 million dollars?

Who pays to develop the dispenser?

Even at $6 million it is super cheap compared to minimum $30 million for 6 Electron launches, if not more.
« Last Edit: 05/19/2020 02:37 pm by M.E.T. »

Offline woods170

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #212 on: 05/19/2020 03:33 pm »
Planet's sats are 120 kgs, they are launching six of them on an upcoming Starlink launch. Any guesses on pricing? Planet sats are 120 kgs each. The rideshare program charges a million dollars for up to 200 kgs plus $5000/kg over 200 kilograms.

Does Planet pay 6 million dollars, or 120kg X 6 = 720kg, 3.6 million dollars?

Who pays to develop the dispenser?

Two corrections:
1. The six Planet sats are going up on TWO Starlink launches, not ONE. Three sats on each launch.

2. SpaceX charges $1 Million for the first 200 kg to orbit and $5000 for each additional kg. The three Planet sats on each Starlink launch are considered as a SINGLE payload.  This translates into 3 * 120 kg = 360kg. Add in the weight of the custom adapter and you get to roughly 400 kg. First 200 kg goes for $1 Million. The remaining 200 kg go for 200kg * $5000 = $1 Million. As such, for launching 3 of Planet's sats on a single Starlink launch SpaceX will likely charge Planet a mere $2 Million.
For two launches (six satellites in all) that would come down to just $4 million.

THAT is a serious blow to the RocketLab business model.

With regards to who pays for development of the dispenser. The answer is Planet. It is a dispenser specifically for their needs. Development is a cooperative effort between SpaceX and Planet.
« Last Edit: 05/19/2020 03:35 pm by woods170 »

Online TrevorMonty

Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #213 on: 05/19/2020 07:48 pm »
Planet's sats are 120 kgs, they are launching six of them on an upcoming Starlink launch. Any guesses on pricing? Planet sats are 120 kgs each. The rideshare program charges a million dollars for up to 200 kgs plus $5000/kg over 200 kilograms.

Does Planet pay 6 million dollars, or 120kg X 6 = 720kg, 3.6 million dollars?

Who pays to develop the dispenser?

Two corrections:
1. The six Planet sats are going up on TWO Starlink launches, not ONE. Three sats on each launch.

2. SpaceX charges $1 Million for the first 200 kg to orbit and $5000 for each additional kg. The three Planet sats on each Starlink launch are considered as a SINGLE payload.  This translates into 3 * 120 kg = 360kg. Add in the weight of the custom adapter and you get to roughly 400 kg. First 200 kg goes for $1 Million. The remaining 200 kg go for 200kg * $5000 = $1 Million. As such, for launching 3 of Planet's sats on a single Starlink launch SpaceX will likely charge Planet a mere $2 Million.
For two launches (six satellites in all) that would come down to just $4 million.

THAT is a serious blow to the RocketLab business model.

With regards to who pays for development of the dispenser. The answer is Planet. It is a dispenser specifically for their needs. Development is a cooperative effort between SpaceX and Planet.
RL are targetting different need even if they are in same payload market. The 1000kg LVs ie Firefly, Relativity on the other hand will be going head to head with SpaceX rideshare as they need to launch 4-5 250kg satellites at time. While there are 500-1000kg LEO sats they are smaller market.

There is new emerging GEO smallsat market which these 1000kg LVs can provide dedicated rides.



Offline abaddon

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #214 on: 05/19/2020 09:34 pm »
RL are targetting different need even if they are in same payload market.
At some point, the 'different need' argument only holds so much water if you're paying 4x (being extremely generous) as much for it.

Online TrevorMonty

Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #215 on: 05/20/2020 10:43 am »
RL are targetting different need even if they are in same payload market.
At some point, the 'different need' argument only holds so much water if you're paying 4x (being extremely generous) as much for it.
People pay lot more for taxis than buses, same goes for airfreight vs sea freight. There is always going be market for somebody needing to control launch time  and destination.

Offline ChrisWilson68

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #216 on: 05/20/2020 12:28 pm »
RL are targetting different need even if they are in same payload market.
At some point, the 'different need' argument only holds so much water if you're paying 4x (being extremely generous) as much for it.
People pay lot more for taxis than buses, same goes for airfreight vs sea freight. There is always going be market for somebody needing to control launch time  and destination.

By that line of reasoning, there will always be a market for any product, no matter how expensive.  But that's not the way the real world works.

It's all about the cost/benefit trade-off.  If you want to make a convincing case for the viability of Rocket Lab and other dedicated smallsat launchers, you need to do better than claiming some more expensive products being viable proves all more expensive products are viable.

There are many people for whom paying for a taxi is a small expense.  Smallsat developers are generally developing smallsats precisely because they are cheap and being cheap is critically important for them.  And launch is not cheap.  Launch is incredibly expensive.  You need to show that making this incredibly large expense larger still is worth it to smallsat developers.

When a much lower-cost provider comes along, the companies who can't compete on price always claim that they're not worried because they are providing more value.  But often, in fact, the lower-cost competitors drive their higher-priced providers out of business.

Offline jpo234

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You want to be inspired by things. You want to wake up in the morning and think the future is going to be great. That's what being a spacefaring civilization is all about. It's about believing in the future and believing the future will be better than the past. And I can't think of anything more exciting than being out there among the stars.

Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #218 on: 06/09/2020 01:24 pm »
Quote
Planet teams with SpaceX to expand its Earth-observation constellation
“They cut the price so much we could not believe what we were looking at.”

ERIC BERGER - 6/9/2020, 11:00 AM

https://arstechnica.com/science/2020/06/planet-teams-with-spacex-to-expand-its-earth-observation-constellation/

https://twitter.com/sciguyspace/status/1270340994173730820

Quote
The company was blown away by the rideshare price offered by SpaceX.

"They cut the price so much we could not believe what we were looking at," Planet VP Mike Safyan said. "With SpaceX being the lowest price option out there, they are the first port of call for us."

Offline M.E.T.

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Re: SpaceX SmallSat Rideshare Program
« Reply #219 on: 06/09/2020 03:06 pm »
Quote
Planet teams with SpaceX to expand its Earth-observation constellation
“They cut the price so much we could not believe what we were looking at.”

ERIC BERGER - 6/9/2020, 11:00 AM

https://arstechnica.com/science/2020/06/planet-teams-with-spacex-to-expand-its-earth-observation-constellation/

https://twitter.com/sciguyspace/status/1270340994173730820

Quote
The company was blown away by the rideshare price offered by SpaceX.

"They cut the price so much we could not believe what we were looking at," Planet VP Mike Safyan said. "With SpaceX being the lowest price option out there, they are the first port of call for us."

Look, Elon warned them a couple of years ago - single use rockets don’t make sense, even for smallsat launches. No one seems to have listened, with what feels like dozens of would-be smallsat launchers trying to enter the market.

We’ll see what sized market is left once F9 has established itself in the rideshare market. Not to even think about a future with Starship and space tugs.

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