Author Topic: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12  (Read 664704 times)

Offline StuffOfInterest

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #20 on: 07/23/2021 06:59 pm »
At what point, if ever, does this thing get filled with concrete?

Edit: I think I presumed the wrong "thing" before

I don't think you will see the concrete fill on the OLIT until all the welding is done between the segments.  That is going to take a while.
« Last Edit: 07/23/2021 07:00 pm by StuffOfInterest »

Offline baking

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #21 on: 07/23/2021 07:48 pm »
The black in the drawing below of section 9 is known or assumed from braces on the parts we've seen, including the partial column in the photo below from John Randolph (ultimate source unclear.)  It now seems obvious that it will sit on the stump column of section 8.  The only structural unknown seems to be a possible diagonal brace shown in red although that brace may be made more complicated by rigging details.

Offline Paul_G

At what point, if ever, does this thing get filled with concrete?
Maybe once they get the environmental approvals to launch using the tower - in theory it could still come down - right now that just involves getting a large spanner out and take it down as they put it up. Removing a concrete filled structure would be a whole new ball game.

Offline AC in NC

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #23 on: 07/23/2021 11:11 pm »
Maybe once they get the environmental approvals to launch using the tower - in theory it could still come down - right now that just involves getting a large spanner out and take it down as they put it up. Removing a concrete filled structure would be a whole new ball game.

SpaceX has always had a license to launch the Falcon Heavy from Starbase, Texas.
Any experimental rocket with the same (or less) thrust will have the same (or less) environmental impact.
So SpaceX has, today, a license to launch experimental Starship and boosters, as long as they have essentially the same thrust (or less) than the Falcon Heavy.
(There was always going to be a Falcon Heavy launch tower.)

"License" is not true as stated.  "NEPA Environmental Compliance" might be.

SpaceX still needs to apply for and receive Launch Licenses on a case-by-case basis.  Boca Chica is not approved with a Blanket Launch Facility License for which no individual launch licenses are required.

Offline joek

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #24 on: 07/24/2021 01:03 am »
SpaceX has always had a license to launch the Falcon Heavy from Starbase, Texas.
Nope. Neither an LLS or LLO was ever issued for F9 or FH launches from BC.
Quote
So SpaceX has, today, a license to launch experimental Starship and boosters, as long as they have essentially the same thrust (or less) than the Falcon Heavy.
Nope. SS yes (has LRLO with constraints); booster no. And "as long as they have essentially the same thrust (or less) than the Falcon Heavy" has nothing to do with it. They are different vehicles.

Suggest reading and taking further discussion to the FAA Permits & Licenses for BC; all issues underlying their procurement thread. Relying on your intuition or what you think should be is betraying you; strongly suggest doing some research and checking the facts before making such embarrassing statements.

Offline jebbo

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #25 on: 07/24/2021 05:52 am »
At what point, if ever, does this thing get filled with concrete?

I think they closed the hatch at the base of one pillar yesterday (the same one where they were messing with the holes for the rail system) ... hard to be sure as it faced away from the camera but there were people working on that area.

--- Tony

Offline StuffOfInterest

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #26 on: 07/24/2021 11:05 am »
The black in the drawing below of section 9 is known or assumed from braces on the parts we've seen, including the partial column in the photo below from John Randolph (ultimate source unclear.)  It now seems obvious that it will sit on the stump column of section 8.  The only structural unknown seems to be a possible diagonal brace shown in red although that brace may be made more complicated by rigging details.

If I had to guess, I'd say that this column section isn't going to sit directly on top of the stub column but is going to sandwich some piece of equipment (such as a very heavy duty set of pully wheels) between the two flat faced columns sections.

Also, looking at that photo, I bet there may be some repair work needed before this column section is installed.  It looks like the cribbing under it crushed and the flanges on the underside were pushed into the trailer bed.  They may not be as straight as they are supposed to be now.

Offline Tangilinear Interjar

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #27 on: 07/24/2021 01:03 pm »
  Just got a chance to watch yesterday's NSF update video. Looks like they had a team tapping/cleaning the holes used for rails on the lower tower sections. Looking forward to seeing the catching/hoisting assembly that is put together for this.

And if you look closely at the cropped picture from RGV Aerial Photography you can see the stack of "rail" plates waiting for installation.

As for filling with concrete, the whole thing must be welded up first and they seem to be taking more than a week per level. It's gonna be a while.

Offline jfallen

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #28 on: 07/24/2021 01:18 pm »
It looks like most of the speculation was wrong irt direct assembly.  From Mary's photo they are using another jig.  The final level looks like it will only have three columns, with the gap at the built up area from the previous level.
« Last Edit: 07/24/2021 01:19 pm by jfallen »

Offline grndkntrl

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #29 on: 07/24/2021 01:34 pm »
  Just got a chance to watch yesterday's NSF update video. Looks like they had a team tapping/cleaning the holes used for rails on the lower tower sections. Looking forward to seeing the catching/hoisting assembly that is put together for this.

And if you look closely at the cropped picture from RGV Aerial Photography you can see the stack of "rail" plates waiting for installation.

As for filling with concrete, the whole thing must be welded up first and they seem to be taking more than a week per level. It's gonna be a while.

I've been thinking for a quite a while (since tower section #3 went up with rails pre-attached) that they deliberately left these rail segments off of sections 1 & 2 because they need to mount/mate the entire arm mechanism on its carriages to the tower (initially with the crawler cranes) without the rails to block the installation.

They'd then lift it so that the carriage bogies/trolleys fully engage with the existing rails, at which point the drawworks could take up the load from the crawlers, and finally they can install the remainder of the rail segments.

This will give the arms traversal of almost the entire height of the steel portion of the tower up to where the rails end on section 8, below the level of the big overhang facing the launch table.

Offline grndkntrl

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #30 on: 07/24/2021 01:53 pm »
It looks like most of the speculation was wrong irt direct assembly.  From Mary's photo they are using another jig.  The final level looks like it will only have three columns, with the gap at the built up area from the previous level.

No there are four columns, it's just the the 4th one is a little stubby one (see here) that will probably sit on top of the pulley block which is to be fitted on the taller column at overhang corner of section 8.

They'll either:

- attach this directly on top of that pulley block and then lift that two part assembly up to the aforementioned taller column on section 8 for installation. the rest of section 9 can then be lifted up and everything gets joined together;

or,

- install the stubby column to where it belongs on section 9 while it's on the jig at ground level, the stubby corner will be held in place to the two adjacent corner columns by the 2 horizontal connecting beams, not attached to the jig because it'll be "floating" above that corner of the jig with free air between. Then that gets lifted and joined to section 8.

Offline V42

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #31 on: 07/24/2021 04:08 pm »
It looks like most of the speculation was wrong irt direct assembly.  From Mary's photo they are using another jig.  The final level looks like it will only have three columns, with the gap at the built up area from the previous level.

No there are four columns, it's just the the 4th one is a little stubby one (see here) that will probably sit on top of the pulley block which is to be fitted on the taller column at overhang corner of section 8.

They'll either:

- attach this directly on top of that pulley block and then lift that two part assembly up to the aforementioned taller column on section 8 for installation. the rest of section 9 can then be lifted up and everything gets joined together;

or,

- install the stubby column to where it belongs on section 9 while it's on the jig at ground level, the stubby corner will be held in place to the two adjacent corner columns by the 2 horizontal connecting beams, not attached to the jig because it'll be "floating" above that corner of the jig with free air between. Then that gets lifted and joined to section 8.

All this talk (here and elsewhere) about the section 9 configuration ignores one thing… most proposed arrangements do not form a stable geometry for the lift when stacking. No matter how you close out the currently missing fourth corner, the assembly will sag without horizontal members joining the bottom of the corner columns together. But there is also no provision in the corner column gusset plates to attach them in that area. So unless the lifting fixture can provide the needed stiffness, either some kind of temporary bracing will need to be added or there is more to come to section 9 than has been proposed so far.

Update: seems I might have been right on both counts… a screen shot from this morning shows both what looks to be the temporary horizontal bracing (green arrow) and some unexpected new structure (red arrow) shown below.
« Last Edit: 07/24/2021 04:29 pm by V42 »

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #32 on: 07/24/2021 04:11 pm »
https://twitter.com/obetraveller/status/1418924033828171777

Quote
Some additions to the orbital launch table

Offline cdebuhr

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #33 on: 07/24/2021 04:20 pm »
It looks like most of the speculation was wrong irt direct assembly.  From Mary's photo they are using another jig.  The final level looks like it will only have three columns, with the gap at the built up area from the previous level.

No there are four columns, it's just the the 4th one is a little stubby one (see here) that will probably sit on top of the pulley block which is to be fitted on the taller column at overhang corner of section 8.

They'll either:

- attach this directly on top of that pulley block and then lift that two part assembly up to the aforementioned taller column on section 8 for installation. the rest of section 9 can then be lifted up and everything gets joined together;

or,

- install the stubby column to where it belongs on section 9 while it's on the jig at ground level, the stubby corner will be held in place to the two adjacent corner columns by the 2 horizontal connecting beams, not attached to the jig because it'll be "floating" above that corner of the jig with free air between. Then that gets lifted and joined to section 8.

All this talk (here and elsewhere) about the section 9 configuration ignores one thing… most proposed arrangements do not form a stable geometry for the lift when stacking. No matter how you close out the currently missing fourth corner, the assembly will sag without horizontal members joining the bottom of the corner columns together. But there is also no provision in the corner column gusset plates to attach them in that area. So unless the lifting fixture can provide the needed stiffness, either some kind of temporary bracing will need to be added or there is more to come to section 9 than has been proposed so far.
There are some light-gauge horizontal members that look temporary to me between the bottoms of the columns ... just not across the diagonal.  In any case, this seems like a non-issue to me.  So long as whatever lifting frame they use accounts for the geometry of the assembled components and is properly balanced, all forces between the lifting frame and the columns should be restricted to a straight vertical lift.  Should be fine.  The existing frame would need to be modified by removing the two spreaders to the missing column and adding a diagonal element, and the whole thing needs to be carefully balanced, but those are not show-stoppers by any measure.

Online meekGee

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #34 on: 07/24/2021 04:27 pm »
It looks like most of the speculation was wrong irt direct assembly.  From Mary's photo they are using another jig.  The final level looks like it will only have three columns, with the gap at the built up area from the previous level.

No there are four columns, it's just the the 4th one is a little stubby one (see here) that will probably sit on top of the pulley block which is to be fitted on the taller column at overhang corner of section 8.

They'll either:

- attach this directly on top of that pulley block and then lift that two part assembly up to the aforementioned taller column on section 8 for installation. the rest of section 9 can then be lifted up and everything gets joined together;

or,

- install the stubby column to where it belongs on section 9 while it's on the jig at ground level, the stubby corner will be held in place to the two adjacent corner columns by the 2 horizontal connecting beams, not attached to the jig because it'll be "floating" above that corner of the jig with free air between. Then that gets lifted and joined to section 8.

All this talk (here and elsewhere) about the section 9 configuration ignores one thing… most proposed arrangements do not form a stable geometry for the lift when stacking. No matter how you close out the currently missing fourth corner, the assembly will sag without horizontal members joining the bottom of the corner columns together. But there is also no provision in the corner column gusset plates to attach them in that area. So unless the lifting fixture can provide the needed stiffness, either some kind of temporary bracing will need to be added or there is more to come to section 9 than has been proposed so far.
You can complete the missing diagonals wIth cables, right?  Maybe will need to tension them on final assembly but that's just another come-along.
« Last Edit: 07/24/2021 04:28 pm by meekGee »
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Offline V42

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #35 on: 07/24/2021 04:51 pm »
It looks like most of the speculation was wrong irt direct assembly.  From Mary's photo they are using another jig.  The final level looks like it will only have three columns, with the gap at the built up area from the previous level.

No there are four columns, it's just the the 4th one is a little stubby one (see here) that will probably sit on top of the pulley block which is to be fitted on the taller column at overhang corner of section 8.

They'll either:

- attach this directly on top of that pulley block and then lift that two part assembly up to the aforementioned taller column on section 8 for installation. the rest of section 9 can then be lifted up and everything gets joined together;

or,

- install the stubby column to where it belongs on section 9 while it's on the jig at ground level, the stubby corner will be held in place to the two adjacent corner columns by the 2 horizontal connecting beams, not attached to the jig because it'll be "floating" above that corner of the jig with free air between. Then that gets lifted and joined to section 8.

All this talk (here and elsewhere) about the section 9 configuration ignores one thing… most proposed arrangements do not form a stable geometry for the lift when stacking. No matter how you close out the currently missing fourth corner, the assembly will sag without horizontal members joining the bottom of the corner columns together. But there is also no provision in the corner column gusset plates to attach them in that area. So unless the lifting fixture can provide the needed stiffness, either some kind of temporary bracing will need to be added or there is more to come to section 9 than has been proposed so far.
There are some light-gauge horizontal members that look temporary to me between the bottoms of the columns ... just not across the diagonal.  In any case, this seems like a non-issue to me.  So long as whatever lifting frame they use accounts for the geometry of the assembled components and is properly balanced, all forces between the lifting frame and the columns should be restricted to a straight vertical lift.  Should be fine.  The existing frame would need to be modified by removing the two spreaders to the missing column and adding a diagonal element, and the whole thing needs to be carefully balanced, but those are not show-stoppers by any measure.

You’re right, I missed those temporary members you pointed out and went back and editing my previous post… just not quick enough :(. But they are important because without them the forces from the lifting fixture (no matter how perfectly balanced) would have allowed the section to sag if they were restricted to applying only vertical force without those temporary members in place. So my concern was if they hadn’t been there, something else was missing. But that is a moot point now… so never mind.

Offline AstroDave

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #36 on: 07/24/2021 05:00 pm »
  Back in early June, a large pulley system and associated hardware got delivered to BC. Starship Gazer was lucky to be at the right place at the right time to grab a some photos.

https://twitter.com/StarshipGazer/status/1402815014881345540

  The delivery seemed to disappear into the complex until needed at a later date. A recent photo gave a hint as to where they were being stored, and with RGV's large panoramas it was possible to find the staging area. See yellow circle on first image below.
  Additional single sheaves/fairleads have been delivered to launch site, and are very similar to some of the single sheave assemblies staged at the build site. The two enlarged site images below show the same area on different dates: 1 and 20 of July. The resolution isn't great, but the large sheave assembly can be seen, as well as some of the single sheave assemblies. In total there are quite a few of the single units, and it will be exciting to see how all of these are integrated into the final form.

  If you are interested in looking at originals, visit the "Easy Zoom" page where RGV has uploaded his panoramas. Links below are for two different dates to compare equipment on site-

1 July: https://www.easyzoom.com/imageaccess/797ef93e6fa044aebc0646be5364995f

20 July: https://www.easyzoom.com/imageaccess/2f4ca179fa6c4ff5a0409037cbe7733d

Offline V42

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #37 on: 07/24/2021 05:03 pm »
It looks like most of the speculation was wrong irt direct assembly.  From Mary's photo they are using another jig.  The final level looks like it will only have three columns, with the gap at the built up area from the previous level.

No there are four columns, it's just the the 4th one is a little stubby one (see here) that will probably sit on top of the pulley block which is to be fitted on the taller column at overhang corner of section 8.

They'll either:

- attach this directly on top of that pulley block and then lift that two part assembly up to the aforementioned taller column on section 8 for installation. the rest of section 9 can then be lifted up and everything gets joined together;

or,

- install the stubby column to where it belongs on section 9 while it's on the jig at ground level, the stubby corner will be held in place to the two adjacent corner columns by the 2 horizontal connecting beams, not attached to the jig because it'll be "floating" above that corner of the jig with free air between. Then that gets lifted and joined to section 8.

All this talk (here and elsewhere) about the section 9 configuration ignores one thing… most proposed arrangements do not form a stable geometry for the lift when stacking. No matter how you close out the currently missing fourth corner, the assembly will sag without horizontal members joining the bottom of the corner columns together. But there is also no provision in the corner column gusset plates to attach them in that area. So unless the lifting fixture can provide the needed stiffness, either some kind of temporary bracing will need to be added or there is more to come to section 9 than has been proposed so far.
You can complete the missing diagonals wIth cables, right?  Maybe will need to tension them on final assembly but that's just another come-along.

Unfortunately cables don’t work well in compression ;). But I was mistaken and those temporary horizontal members are indeed there. So my apologies for not looking more careful and raising a nonissue.

Offline AstroDave

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #38 on: 07/24/2021 05:44 pm »
  In many pictures of the assembly jig being used to prebuild section #9 of the tower, the view of the unused corner has been blocked by various pieces of equipment. OceanCam posted a video today (24 July) in the BC Production Update thread that finally shows a good view of this unused corner. When you know where to look, you can see it in other photos, but you have to look carefully to find it hidden amongst equipment.

  Why is this important? That corner of the jig has a small extension on it that will probably allow the placement of the fourth "shortie" column.

Online meekGee

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Re: SpaceX Texas launch site Discussion and Updates - Thread 12
« Reply #39 on: 07/24/2021 06:10 pm »
It looks like most of the speculation was wrong irt direct assembly.  From Mary's photo they are using another jig.  The final level looks like it will only have three columns, with the gap at the built up area from the previous level.

No there are four columns, it's just the the 4th one is a little stubby one (see here) that will probably sit on top of the pulley block which is to be fitted on the taller column at overhang corner of section 8.

They'll either:

- attach this directly on top of that pulley block and then lift that two part assembly up to the aforementioned taller column on section 8 for installation. the rest of section 9 can then be lifted up and everything gets joined together;

or,

- install the stubby column to where it belongs on section 9 while it's on the jig at ground level, the stubby corner will be held in place to the two adjacent corner columns by the 2 horizontal connecting beams, not attached to the jig because it'll be "floating" above that corner of the jig with free air between. Then that gets lifted and joined to section 8.

All this talk (here and elsewhere) about the section 9 configuration ignores one thing… most proposed arrangements do not form a stable geometry for the lift when stacking. No matter how you close out the currently missing fourth corner, the assembly will sag without horizontal members joining the bottom of the corner columns together. But there is also no provision in the corner column gusset plates to attach them in that area. So unless the lifting fixture can provide the needed stiffness, either some kind of temporary bracing will need to be added or there is more to come to section 9 than has been proposed so far.
You can complete the missing diagonals wIth cables, right?  Maybe will need to tension them on final assembly but that's just another come-along.

Unfortunately cables don’t work well in compression ;). But I was mistaken and those temporary horizontal members are indeed there. So my apologies for not looking more careful and raising a nonissue.
Oh come on, you use two, look at any cable stabilized structure out there...
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