Author Topic: Draft RFP for six AF launches (FA8811-17-R-0004) May 3, 2017  (Read 14013 times)

Offline baldusi

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How does this change the calculations?

42698   INMARSAT 5-F4   2017-025A      1401.67min   24.50deg   69839km   381km      
42699   FALCON 9 R/B   2017-025B           1410.43min   24.47deg   70181km   384km

The actual numbers were 1,569 and 1,568m/s, respectively. Same potato.

Offline MP99



How does this change the calculations?

42698INMARSAT 5-F42017-025A1401.67min24.50deg69839km381km
42699FALCON 9 R/B2017-025B        1410.43min24.47deg70181km384km

The actual numbers were 1,569 and 1,568m/s, respectively. Same potato.

LouScheffer based his numbers on 6.1t to minimal GTO.

F9 expendable achieved nearly 250 m/s better than that.

Cheers, Martin

Offline AncientU

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AFSPC-8 and AFSPC-52 appear right on the edge of Falcon-9 performance. 
AFSPC-8 needs 1700kg to GEO.  ...

AFSPC-52 needs to show a demonstrated launch of at least 6350 kg to GTO.   ...

AFSPC-12 (2700 kg to GEO) would definitely require a Falcon Heavy.

What are the corresponding Atlas V configurations for each of these three (non-GPS) payloads?
Does the Falcon price advantage actually increase with the heavier payloads because of the added SRBs on Atlas?  Since the current version of F9 lists 8,300kg to GTO and 4,020kg to Mars, isn't it possible to do 2,700kg to GEO with an expendable F9, or does the plane change add too much delta-v requirement?

Here's how I was finally able to get my mind around this launch result. 

It would take an Atlas 541 to match this performance, or a Proton M Briz M Phase 3 or 4.  Ariane 5 ECA could do it, of course, as could Delta 4 Heavy.  CZ-5, theoretically though it has yet to demonstrate the capability.  H-2B, ditto.  That's it, I think, among active launchers.
...
 - Ed Kyle

So, does the recent result, plus the pending introduction of Block 5 F9 mean that these three AFSPC payloads will be contests between Atlas 541s or 551s and F9s (probably expendable)?
« Last Edit: 05/17/2017 09:12 pm by AncientU »
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Offline edkyle99

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So, does the recent result, plus the pending introduction of Block 5 F9 mean that these three AFSPC payloads will be contests between Atlas 541s or 551s and F9s (probably expendable)?
NGL might contend as well, but probably not since it won't be flying by the time most of these launches are projected to occur.  http://www.spacelaunchreport.com/ngl.html#config

 - Ed Kyle
« Last Edit: 05/17/2017 09:24 pm by edkyle99 »

Offline AncientU

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So, does the recent result, plus the pending introduction of Block 5 F9 mean that these three AFSPC payloads will be contests between Atlas 541s or 551s and F9s (probably expendable)?
NGL might contend as well, but probably not since it won't be flying by the time most of these launches are projected to occur.  http://www.spacelaunchreport.com/ngl.html#config

 - Ed Kyle

These six AFSPC launches are EELV Phase 1A to be competed this year.  My understanding is the Orbital ATK was targeting the Phase 2 opportunity in 2019(?), but wouldn't be ready for Phase 1A.
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Online gongora

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So, does the recent result, plus the pending introduction of Block 5 F9 mean that these three AFSPC payloads will be contests between Atlas 541s or 551s and F9s (probably expendable)?
NGL might contend as well.  http://www.spacelaunchreport.com/ngl.html#config

 - Ed Kyle

The round of contracts where NGL could be a factor doesn't start for a few more years (around 2020).  These six and the next set of six should just be between ULA and SpaceX.  (Hard to tell if FH will be a factor, maybe if SpaceX can get one launched before the second set of contracts is awarded.)

The draft RFP for the new launchers is here:
Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) Launch Service Agreements (LSA) Draft Request for Proposal (RFP)
One interesting thing in that RFP is the requirements for EELV Class C fairing (and payload adapter) size.

Offline AncientU

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This larger fairing requirement might be closing the loop with the new Air Force monies for such things where SpaceX and large fairing were an example of what could be funded.
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Offline deruch

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Here's how I was finally able to get my mind around this launch result. 

It would take an Atlas 541 to match this performance, or a Proton M Briz M Phase 3 or 4.  Ariane 5 ECA could do it, of course, as could Delta 4 Heavy.  CZ-5, theoretically though it has yet to demonstrate the capability.  H-2B, ditto.  That's it, I think, among active launchers.
...
 - Ed Kyle

So, does the recent result, plus the pending introduction of Block 5 F9 mean that these three AFSPC payloads will be contests between Atlas 541s or 551s and F9s (probably expendable)?

@gongora replied to a similar question of mine earlier in the thread that MRS missions don't count for "demonstrated capability" and therefore the I5F4 mission may not be used as a basis.  Whether the F9 is qualified to compete on those payloads due to other missions or not I don't know. 

AFSPC-52 needs to show a demonstrated launch of at least 6350 kg to GTO.   Given that SpaceX is going to put 6070kg to a super-synchronous orbit with Inmarsat 5, the performance should be there.  However it's not clear SpaceX has a particular launch that meets the requirement.  They have discussed launching heavier sats, but these were more than 7t to sub-synchronous orbit, which would not meet the "demonstrated" even if the equivalent performance is there.
For demonstrating that launch and assuming a heavy enough payload to qualify, does it have to be to a planned orbit?  Or would an minimum residual shutdown launch that gets it there but not to an exact planned orbit qualify?

I'm not going to reread the documents tonight, but somewhere in the evaluation criteria it mentions that minimum residual shutdown launches don't count towards showing a history of accurate orbital insertion, and all of the missions seem to require fairly accurate orbits.
Shouldn't reality posts be in "Advanced concepts"?  --Nomadd

Online gongora

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I found this for the upper stage disposal.  Does anyone know if the EELV SPRD document is publicly available?
Quote
4-1. Disposal for final mission orbits: A spacecraft or upper stage may be disposed of by one of three methods:

a. Atmospheric reentry option: Leave the structure in an orbit in which, using conservative projections for solar activity, atmospheric drag will limit the lifetime to no longer than 25 years after completion of mission. If drag enhancement devices are to be used to reduce the orbit lifetime, it should be demonstrated that such devices will significantly reduce the area-time product of the system or will not cause spacecraft or large debris to fragment if a collision occurs while the system is decaying from orbit. If a space structure is to be disposed of by reentry into the Earth’s atmosphere, the risk of human casualty will be less than 1 in 10,000.

b. Maneuvering to a storage orbit: At end of life the structure may be relocated to one of the following storage regimes:
I. Between LEO and MEO: Maneuver to an orbit with perigee altitude above 2000 km and apogee altitude below 19,700 km (500 km below semi-synchronous altitude
II. Between MEO and GEO: Maneuver to an orbit with perigee altitude above 20,700 km and apogee altitude below 35,300 km (approximately 500 km above semi-synchronous altitude and 500 km below synchronous altitude.)
III. Above GEO: Maneuver to an orbit with perigee altitude above 36,100 km (approximately 300 km above synchronous altitude)
IV. Heliocentric, Earth-escape: Maneuver to remove the structure from Earth orbit, into a heliocentric orbit.
Because of fuel gauging uncertainties near the end of mission, a program should use a maneuver strategy that reduces the risk of leaving the structure near an operational orbit regime.

c. Direct retrieval: Retrieve the structure and remove it from orbit as soon as practical after completion of mission.

Offline Lar

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c. Direct retrieval: Retrieve the structure and remove it from orbit as soon as practical after completion of mission.

That seems tailor made for ITS :) But that's a very long way out I think
"I think it would be great to be born on Earth and to die on Mars. Just hopefully not at the point of impact." -Elon Musk
"We're a little bit like the dog who caught the bus" - Musk after CRS-8 S1 successfully landed on ASDS OCISLY

Online gongora

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gongora replied to a similar question of mine earlier in the thread that MRS missions don't count for "demonstrated capability" and therefore the I5F4 mission may not be used as a basis.  Whether the F9 is qualified to compete on those payloads due to other missions or not I don't know. 

They might get by on a combination of historical data and analysis if it's for a mission profile or payload weight they haven't performed yet.  There are some provisions for that in the document, but I'm not sure if that's valid for every sub-factor.  If they can show that they wouldn't need to burn-to-depletion for the mission profile being bid, and show insertion accuracy for missions that went to planned orbits, that could be good enough to get a bid accepted.  Also unknown is what version of Falcon 9 they will be able to bid?  This isn't the final RFP yet so the submission deadline is probably still a few months away.  They might be establishing some flight history with the full Block 4 when the proposals are actually submitted.  Block 5 and FH are most likely not a factor for these contracts.

(I updated the link in the top post so it actually goes to the page for the RFP now.)


Online gongora

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Not sure where to stick this, written testimony from Gen. Raymond to the House Armed Services Committee on Friday.   I haven't gotten around to actually watching the video (and not sure if I will.)

Quote
3) Assured Access to Space
Assured access to space is critical to the national security of the United States. The Air Force has launched 70 national security mission over the past 17 years without a single mission failure. All space operations hinge on assured access to the space domain and successful launches are the result of close collaboration between AFSPC and a host of partners to maintain on-demand access to the high ground.

Since February 2016 there have been ten successful national security EELV missions: Global Positioning System (GPS) IIF-12; National Reconnaissance Office Launch (NROL)-45; NROL-37; Mobile User Objective System (MUOS)-5; NROL-61; AFSPC-6; Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS)-8; SBIRS GEO-4 (Flight 3); NROL-79; and WGS-9.

The Air Force goal remains maintaining two or more domestic commercial launch service providers that are capable of lifting the entire national security space manifest in support of our enduring commitment of assured access to space. Toward that end we certified SpaceX's Falcon 9 Upgrade and initiated the new entrant certification process for their heavy launch vehicle. We are excited about adding another launch vehicle to our complement of available launch providers and look forward to more opportunities in this area going forward. We have also initiated the new entrant certification process for United Launch Alliance’s Vulcan launch vehicle and Orbital ATK’s Next Generation Launch Vehicle.

We awarded the first competitive EELV mission in over a decade last year to SpaceX and a second GPS mission was awarded in March 2017. These missions will launch in 2018 and 2019, and show how the revitalization of competition is good for our national defense by providing assured access to space while improving affordability. This coming year, twelve national security space launches across a variety of mission sets will be competed. Going forward, the Air Force is laser-focused on maintaining mission success and implementing a strategy that supports sustainable competition that we expect will improve affordability.

The Air Force is also committed to transitioning off the Russian RD-180 engine while maintaining assured access to space, and will achieve this by partnering with industry through shared investment to also meet the more stressing national security launch needs. Additionally, the Air Force is investing in rocket propulsion system prototypes in compliance with the Fiscal Years 2015, 2016, and 2017 National Defense Authorization Acts. The Air Force will bridge these Other Transaction Authority agreements into launch services.

An important element of assured access to space is the health and reliability of our range infrastructure. One of the exciting initiatives we have been working towards is the integration of the Autonomous Flight Safety System (AFSS) into our launch vehicles. This system greatly reduces dependencies on range infrastructure, human capital and the associated control centers during flight. SpaceX had their first launch using AFSS on February 18, 2017 and we are pushing to have all launch providers and weapons testers adopt AFSS as the standard.

Nothing really new in there, just confirmation that there haven't been any recent changes in their plans for launch competitions and launcher development.

Online gongora

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AFSPC-12 has a propulsive ESPA ring, I wonder if it's this MOOG model?

Offline russianhalo117

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AFSPC-12 has a propulsive ESPA ring, I wonder if it's this MOOG model?
Unless it involves one of the joint AFRL/ULA project test flights listed in project papers on ULA site.

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