Poll

How soon do you think SpaceX will be ready to launch Starship/SuperHeavy again after their 4/20 first flight?

1-2 months (May/June 2023)
3 (1.2%)
3-4 months (July/Aug 2023)
49 (19.8%)
5-6 months (Sep/Oct 2023)
88 (35.6%)
7-9 months (Nov 2023 - Jan 2024)
68 (27.5%)
10-12 months (Feb - Apr 2024)
31 (12.6%)
13-18 months (May - Oct 2024)
3 (1.2%)
More than 18 months
2 (0.8%)
Never
3 (1.2%)

Total Members Voted: 247

Voting closed: 05/01/2023 11:17 pm


Author Topic: How Soon Will SpaceX Be Ready to Fly Starship/SuperHeavy Again?  (Read 41171 times)

Offline jongoff

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SpaceX's 4/20 test flight of the Starship/SuperHeavy launch vehicle resulted in a significant amount of damage to the launchpad, and there were also several in-flight anomalies. How long do you think it will take for SpaceX to have Starship/Superheavy ready for another attempt?

I define ready as:
1- Pad and GSE hardware fully repaired.
2- Any modifications to the launch vehicle made to address other anomalies.
3- The next Starship/Superheavy stacked and put through testing including a static fire sufficient to give confidence that the pad is going to work for the next flight

I'm not including in this securing the next FAA launch license, or dealing with any environmental regulatory actions or litigation related to the first launch. Just how soon will they have things fixed to the point that they'd be ready to try again in absence of regulators or legal complaints.

For reference, Elon is claiming they'll have the pad repaired and a water-cooled flame diverter installed and ready to go in 1-2 months (ie by end of June 2023).

https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1649523985837686784

Please feel free to give your rationale for voting the way you did. I'm only leaving this poll open for 10 days, to get people's opinions based on the info we have available at this point.

Thanks,

~Jon

Offline jongoff

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I voted 7-9 months. I think that repairing the pad and infrastructure, installing and debugging the flame duct, and getting everything else ready to fly again is going to take a lot more time than Elon is suggesting. He's always been overoptimistic about things like this. But I'd like to see what everyone else thinks, and why. And it will be fun to look back after the next flight and see how well the crowd did relative to reality.

~Jon

Offline DanClemmensen

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I voted for 7-9 months. I think it's all repairable without truly major rework like removing the OLM, but they will still need to fix its foundations (similar to strengthening a skyscraper after an earthquake). Also, lots of inspections of everything at the launch site and hundreds to thousands of medium to minor repairs.

All of this assumes that any damage to the interior of the OLM was not catastrophic.

Offline jabe

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I chose sept simply it is birthday month.  :) money can speed up process but effective engineering solution can take time to figure out.  I'm deferring other guess when more known.

Offline Redclaws

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I like that no one has yet taken Elon up on his 1-2 months.  Gotta love the man, but we know better by now.

Offline Metalskin

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Still hard (as a non-engineer) to understand the damage to the pad. To me it looks catastrophic, but what do I know?

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

But we do know that they already have plans for a water cooled plate (uncertain if it's flat or in the form of a divertor) and uncertain if there is Elon-Time in Elon's post or not. He has been better of recent times and surely they must have better data than what we have. But that damage looks so bad to a person sitting half a world away in a chair with no engineering experience at all.

So I would rather have chosen 3 to 9 months. I find the 2 month ranges to close as I really don't have enough info to even have an accurate guess at how long it will be. Hopefully the table isn't out of kilter, hopefully the structural elements of the legs are ok, and hopefully the models in general are not invalid. But that is a lot of hope!

To be honest, I do not believe that all their models are invalid by what has happened. Just their models of what would happen to that special concrete during the launch (forget the name of it). So what has happened shouldn't invalidate their plans.

Though I am a glass half full kind of person.
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Offline Kaputnik

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I went 10-12 but admittedly did not read the question in full, so was assuming new FAA license etc.
"I don't care what anything was DESIGNED to do, I care about what it CAN do"- Gene Kranz

Offline Robotbeat

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I voted 7-9 months. Surprised that I’m on the high side compared to most people. I think they’ll try really hard to be ready before the end of the year, around November sometime. Was thinking of voting 5-6 months, but especially if you’re talking getting static fires done and stuff, 7-9 months seems more likely.

This is still a huge positive step. It took years for Falcon to get to an appreciable launch rate. Really a full decade to reach its potential, and it’s still growing.

Starship did pretty well for a first flight with an intentionally aggressive testing stance.

We are on the cusp of an fundamental change in humanity’s relationship with the cosmos. They’ll get there. They had a tremendous success.
« Last Edit: 04/22/2023 01:59 am by Robotbeat »
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Offline jimvela

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I guessed 5-6 months.
I nearly guessed much longer, as I worry that the damage is much worse than is obvious right now.

Offline Coastal Ron

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I'm going to be super optimistic, and voted 3-4 months. I think it is possible if Musk thinks that 1-2 months is possible...  :D
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

Offline Robotbeat

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I guessed 5-6 months.
I nearly guessed much longer, as I worry that the damage is much worse than is obvious right now.
I think they could rebuild it from scratch in 6 months.
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Offline Metalskin

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I voted 7-9 months. Surprised that I’m on the high side compared to most people. I think they’ll try really hard to be ready before the end of the year, around November sometime. Was thinking of voting 5-6 months, but especially if you’re talking getting static fires done and stuff, 7-9 months seems more likely.

Ahh, comes down to how you interp. the question. I took it to mean when will the launch table be ready for them to start launch related activities (which I inferred to include static fires).

If the question was "When will SpaceX next launch..." then I would have chosen 7-9 months as well.
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Offline Kansan52

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I voted 3 - 4 months. Another flight vehicle can be readied but the launch table will determine when the process will begin.

Maybe most of the engine failures were caused by debris.

Offline Kansan52

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I voted 3 - 4 months. Another flight vehicle can be readied but the launch table will determine when the process will begin.

Maybe most of the engine failures were caused by debris.

Online catdlr

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Remember that in the worst-case scenario, there were plans to build a second pad at Boca Chica and the tower segments, and OLM are almost finished being built at the Cape.  They could start building a new launch pad with a better record blast solution while fixing and retro repair the damaged Launchpad.
« Last Edit: 04/22/2023 02:31 am by catdlr »
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Offline kkattula

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I'm going to be super optimistic, and voted 3-4 months. I think it is possible if Musk thinks that 1-2 months is possible...  :D

This.

Elon’s estimates are usually ‘best case if everything goes right’, which it probably won’t.

I wonder if the rocket just did some of the excavation they would’ve needed to anyway, to install the water-cooled steel plate and deluge system?

Offline joek

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Maybe a bit optimistic; voted 5-6mo: 3-4mo for repairs-construction; another 2-3mo for test-validation (several static fires etc.).  Typical project management contingency of 30% would bring that to 8-9mo. Might also be longer if they succumb to "version 2" affliction, but historically that has not been their MO; or if the data they got suggests substantive changes to the booster which are not in plan for B9. Give it 3-4 weeks and expect significant increase in accuracy of projections.
« Last Edit: 04/22/2023 03:09 am by joek »

Offline Stan-1967

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I don't see any way the early estimates happen.  I'll guess 4 months.   I am also recalling that the structural cement used for the foundation of the OLM as well as the cement poured down the columns took over a month to cure.  I'd baseline the earliest launch has to wait for that.

Also, anyone have any idea how the columns could be inspected to determine if the vibrations of the launch & the impact of debris have compromised the strength anywhere within the steel pipe?  Anything non destructive possible?  If those are compromised would it be a total loss for the viability of the mount?
« Last Edit: 04/22/2023 03:24 am by Stan-1967 »

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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I was thinking 6-7 months, in the end voted 5-6.

This (optimistically) assumes that their post flight analysis confirms that the planned OLM upgrades are good enough and they don’t need another redesign. Still think it’ll take 3-4 months to get the OLM ready for any SS tests again. I think that’s also a reasonable period for tank farm / other GSE repairs.

S26 & B9 already have significant upgrades so I’m assuming not many changes needed to them. For example, stage separation appeared to be an issue but IIRC that’s already been redesigned?

Raptor is a wildcard. I think some failures on first flight were debris related but probably not all. Improvements here could be a long pole. However, given the incremental nature of the test program, Raptor may have performed well enough to only need tweaks for second flight, with bigger improvements subsequently.

So after about 4 months I’m assuming everything is ready for ground testing to start. 5-6 months to launch readiness.

Offline tyrred

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I voted 5-6 months. That way it's guaranteed to be sooner than that or later  :o

Offline Nomadd

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 They're already ahead. It only took six seconds to excavate under the mount for the new flame diverter.
« Last Edit: 04/22/2023 05:57 am by Nomadd »
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Offline DreamyPickle

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September 6th

Offline Tommyboy

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September 6th
I see what you did there ;)

Offline laszlo

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I predict that the paperwork (and the associated lawsuits) for the new/modified environmental impact statement will be the pacing factor, not the actual engineering and construction.

It was one thing to get approval when this take-off was an imaginary event, but now that the raw power has been witnessed it'll be taken a lot more seriously. Images of driveway-sized pieces of concrete racing past the rocket will be as compelling to some as pictures of the Hindenburg coming down in Lakehurst was to air travelers. The images of massive splashes almost beyond the surf line will also be a motivator to those more concerned about preserving a public natural area than going to Mars. Post-flight it doesn't take much imagination to visualize what could happen if some of that big debris had punctured the booster and caused it to explode. The videos show concrete flying close past the ship. Never mind camera angles and distances, the impression is out there. It will mobilize the anti-starbase activists. Possibly even anti-starship in general when they realize the implications of thousands of these planned launches per synod.

There's also the less emotional issues of how to engineer an effective re-usable launchpad in an environmentally sensitive area. The current disposable OLM is relatively lightweight, an actual rapidly re-usable one would be much more environmentally intrusive and would require a lot more paperwork, permitting, etc.

So I am not sanguine at all about SpaceX getting another into the air this year. They keep saying that this test was a successful failure, but I keep remembering the US SST project which never ran into any real technical issues and was killed off anyway. The videos may have shifted the momentum.

Offline jongoff

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I predict that the paperwork (and the associated lawsuits) for the new/modified environmental impact statement will be the pacing factor, not the actual engineering and construction.

I totally agree that regulatory issues and lawsuits will likely take more time than the physical repairs. Which was why I specified that we were only looking at how soon they'd be technically ready. I'm also skeptical they'll be able to turn things around and get approvals and litigation sorted out in time for another launch attempt this year. I hope I'm wrong -- a lot of the stuff we're working on for my day job could really use a commercially available Starship.

~Jon

Offline laszlo

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I predict that the paperwork (and the associated lawsuits) for the new/modified environmental impact statement will be the pacing factor, not the actual engineering and construction.

I totally agree that regulatory issues and lawsuits will likely take more time than the physical repairs. Which was why I specified that we were only looking at how soon they'd be technically ready. I'm also skeptical they'll be able to turn things around and get approvals and litigation sorted out in time for another launch attempt this year. I hope I'm wrong -- a lot of the stuff we're working on for my day job could really use a commercially available Starship.

~Jon

I wasn't ignoring your parameters, I just didn't want to say next year and leave it at that.

I think that the regulatory and legal stuff will impact the speed at which they can address the technical issues, especially since SpaceX is so tied to the iterative approach. If they can't iterate because of paperwork and/or lawsuits, they won't be able to proceed from their first post-launch incremental work product which affects when they'll be technically ready for the next launch, especially if it takes many iterations.

Offline Lee Jay

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I voted 7-9 months.  This includes vehicle prep (cryo tests, static fires, wet dress rehearsals, etc.) for both vehicles, stacking, and getting ready for launch (FAA  license, stocking up the tank farm, and all the rest).  They have a lot to fix, not just the OLM itself.  We don't even know what damage might have been done to the tower, the tank farm looks like a mess, we don't know about tank farm equipment, and they still have to figure out how to keep this from happening again, both with stage 0 and with stage 1.

Lots to do.  1-2 months seems optimistic even for Elon so I'm multiplying by more than my usual pi.

Starship is no longer just a project of a visionary, today there are many strategic interests in launching this ship, which is why I think that everything that is necessary will move quickly.

Offline Comga

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Ooh!
I’m a (relative) pessimist!
laszlo makes a good point.  It’s one thing to calculate 16 Mlbf and another thing to see it demolish and spray out tons of concrete.
The adults in the room, NASA HSF and Shotwell, will want lots of care taken to make sure this doesn’t happen again.
But jose’s point is also good:  there is external pressure to make this happen, from the same HSF team.  Going around the Moon is so 1968.
“Before this (year) is out …”
So ~5X what Musk said:  ;D
« Last Edit: 04/23/2023 01:35 am by Comga »
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline MoodyBlues

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obviously June 9 at 4:20 PM, EST...

Offline Lars-J

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7-9 months for me.

While SpaceX has iterated fast on flight hardware, they now need to focus on ground infrastructure, which has not received the focus and testing it requires.

The main task for the next months needs to be to refine “stage 0” to be able to support a high flight rate to remove the rest of the bugs from the systems. But this will require some pad design decisions re-thinking, which will lead to delays. And then have many tests of such system before the next full launch.

All IMO of course.  :)
« Last Edit: 04/23/2023 01:54 am by Lars-J »

Offline shm6666

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Oh, in software development we talk about definition of ready. I did put in a conservative guess of 13 to 18 month. Of course they can put in a steel plate and a deluge system and call it ready to fly. But I don’t think they will do that. That will then take less then my guess. To have it ready to fly, a static fire with the full power is needed. Much of the debris flying is coming later in the assent. When the engines have blasted the concrete for some good 18 seconds. (Judging be that video of the takeoff) So ready to fly for me is that stage 0 can take that beating.

If we look at the test flight all the engines that failed in the outer ring is on the same side. We have ten good engines on the other side. That tells me that something happened during takeoff to two of the engines and that then had a cascading effect on the rest of the 6 engines that failed in the outer ring. For the middle ring every one was firing. For the inner we hade one that did fail, but on a screenshot from just when the stack emerges from the smoke I do think I can see it lit. But there is a lot of debris kicking up so it might have gotten hit. The second engine that failed later in the inner ring could be a collateral damage from the first.

If the above is correct, starship worked and no major redesign of superheavy / starship is needed. No major redesign of raptor is needed. But a BIG caveat here. If Elon decides that no flame diverter is needed and the Raptor engine must be able to take the beating of a lot of debris flying. (I’m thinking here of takeoff from Moon and Mars especially). Then that can take time. So either they try to do that, make it more robust, which will take time. Or they decide to have “takeoff and landing engines” higher up on starship to get of the ground and then lit the bigger raptor engines, when taking off from Moon and Mars. That redesign will not impact flight two.

But sage 0 need to be redesigned in my humble opinion. That will take time. And I think that they will do it right, they will build a flame diverter. They will have the deluges system. They will control it much better. This will also impact how they design the landing for the Artemis lander. I think the will go back to the design of having the engines much higher up for that.

This of course will also impact the pad they are building at Kennedy. I think the next flight will come from Boca, I think they will have done the necessary fixes to stage 0 and make it a success. But I think it will take just over a year to get there.

Offline svlu

Not sure what major flaws you are referring to? Obviously there was several engines failing, but we do not why, so we can not say if it is major design flaw, it might be. But it can also be that the engines works just fine if not sprayed by concrete…

Offline DAA640

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Not so fast.  This launch showed a vehicle that was in bad shape from the moment it cleared the pad.  But at least we know more now than a few days ago.

I'm not optimistic, but the effort to get this far is notable.  High regards for Elon, but I chose never.

There were minute details of the launch video that allowed me to realize there are significant design/performance flaws with the vehicle.   

But there will be significant changes ahead.  But my feeling is that Starship 1.0 is going to take a major rest.  Current vehicles at BC will likely become museum queens.  I believe the competition very heavy launch vehicles will likely launch before Starship 2.whoa design. 

This is the way.

Did we watch the same launch?

I saw the largest rocket ever built launch 40km into the sky all while suffering from multiple engine failures (likely due to damage caused from the launchpad excavation), potential hydraulic failure with the loss of an HPU, and who knows how much more damage. During its ascent, it passed M-Q before turning over and spinning multiple times at twice the speed of sound without breaking up. During all of this, all but 8 of its engines were still firing, and yet the rocket still suffered no structural failure. In fact, the rocket was not destroyed until the inflight abort was called. It did all this on its first-ever launch.

What this suggests to me is that the Starship stack is an incredibly resilient vehicle, a vehicle that with further iteration and development (in addition to a launch pad that doesn't chuck concrete chunks at it) will be able to reach the incredibly lofty goals of airliner like space travel.

The idea that SpaceX would trash billions of dollars in development, years of effort, and their only plausible way of making humanity a multi-planet species all based on the single failure of a prototype rocket is honestly insane. It is almost more insane than suggesting that after nearly a decade of class-leading performance by SpaceX, they would hit the brakes so badly as to be passed by other space companies that have failed to keep up with even SpaceX's initial break neck pace in the 2010's.

Offline laszlo

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Not so fast....
Did we watch the same launch?...
With anyone else I'd say it was the 6 blind men and the elephant, but he's a well-known troll pulling your chain. Ignore him.

Offline Steve G

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I voted 7 - 9 months as I think that regulatory reviews, and other protests (such as the Sierra Club's) will be define the date for the next launch.

Offline DAA640

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First day on the forum, figures I'd fall for bait. Lol

Offline Eka

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I voted 7-9 months, but my real feelings are 6-8 months. This is due to the damage to other stuff around the pad and the launch platform. That hole can be properly filled and capped over with cement and steel in under a month once things are cleaned up. On the other hand, they have a large amount of stage 0 systems to check out and repair. They will be finding and removing chunks of concrete from the launch platform for months. They will be in every nook and cranny. What did they shred on the way to where they stopped?
We talk about creating a Star Trek future, but will end up with The Expanse if radical change doesn't happen.

Offline FinalFrontier

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Depends on which pad.
Up to one year for Texas or more if enough foundation undermining happened that they have to demolish something. More likely the long side of that if it was worst case and they had to demolish everything.

KSC less but only if NASA and other regulators give them permission to use it. It would also depend on the conditions of use, if they have to build a flame trench instead of just a diverter probably closer to 9 months if not maybe 5 months.
But there aren't any starship or super heavys built at KSC yet so they'd probably have to build one of each. It's possible a starship could be shipped by barge but not the SH too ungainly.


It's possible you could get the Texas site going again more rapidly maybe 6 months or less but to do so would require a massive fever pitch construction effort. And there's weather concerns it will be the rainy season there soon.
So unlikely this would work.

Voted 10-12 months as I'm cynical about repair times and modification times for the pad design.

Booster and ship shouldn't need many changes IMHO as booster 9 and others already incorporated many changes that make it more resilient to damage and less complex. That might be sufficient as is.
« Last Edit: 04/23/2023 01:40 pm by FinalFrontier »
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Offline Johnny057

If the damage to the pad, mount, tower and GSE is really bad and it takes a longer amount of time to redesign and repair, then what happens to the workforce at Starbase?  Do all those workers keep building ships and boosters or would they get retasked to work on repairs?  If not, do they get laid off?  How big a setback would it be to take a hiatus in the design and testing of the vehicles?

Offline deltaV

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I voted 3-4 months, mostly because Musk said 1-2 months and I'm guessing he's optimistic but not wildly so.

Offline Eric Hedman

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I voted 10 to 12 months.  I think it will take a couple of months to assess the damage and what went wrong for both the pad and for the booster.  Then it will probably take another month or two to determine what to do to the pad and the booster.  If there are relatively simple solutions it may take another six months to implement them.  I'm hoping it is only 10 to 12 months as a worst case.

Offline Metalskin

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It's going to be interesting how this pans out and our estimates. The results make a nice curve :-)

Kinda burnt by the fact that I thought they would fly end of last year.
« Last Edit: 04/23/2023 09:44 pm by Metalskin »
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Offline jackvancouver

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I voted 9 months because there is NO WAY that launch table is remaining at that height. Most of the work is done, just time to iterate the launch table, relocate the ship QD to the new height, durability upgrades, etc.

Offline lightleviathan

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I voted 7-9 months because not only will SpaceX have to do a long test campaign again, but rebuild and revalidate the OLM & GSE, along with analyse the anomaly of B7/S24.

Offline rsnellenberger

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I voted 3-4 months, which presumes that any damage to ground facilities (tower, chopsticks & winch, fluids plumbing and tankage) can be repaired or replaced relatively quickly, leaving the pad surface and any required changes to the vehicles as the long pole on the tent.

The pictures we've seen (from RGV Aerial) of what Elon described as a "massive water-cooled steel plate" suggests that the "new" pad surface will still be essentially flat, with the steel plate covering the pad surface below (and possibly extending beyond) the launch platform.  If the cooling water is fed at the center and flows radially outward, heating at the center and entrainment by the exhaust at the plate boundaries (similar to a vacuum ejector) could probably help maintain a high flow rate.

Offline Robotbeat

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This is on the label of the steel SpaceX has on site at Boca Chica. Flame diverter. Other pics show trapezoidal pieces, probably like how you would want for a non-flat shape.
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Offline Jim

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Starship is no longer just a project of a visionary, today there are many strategic interests in launching this ship, which is why I think that everything that is necessary will move quickly.

not really.

Online TrevorMonty

Starship is no longer just a project of a visionary, today there are many strategic interests in launching this ship, which is why I think that everything that is necessary will move quickly.

not really.
Jim is correct. DoD don't need it but nice to have in their inventory. NASA is in process of selecting 2nd HLS that won't rely on SS. The only one that SS is essential to is SpaceX.


Offline whitelancer64

I think it's going to be about six months. FAA investigation and repairs to the pad aside, so much went wrong on the test flight that needs to get analyzed and fixed.
« Last Edit: 04/25/2023 07:07 pm by whitelancer64 »
"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
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Offline jongoff

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Starship is no longer just a project of a visionary, today there are many strategic interests in launching this ship, which is why I think that everything that is necessary will move quickly.

not really.
Jim is correct. DoD don't need it but nice to have in their inventory. NASA is in process of selecting 2nd HLS that won't rely on SS. The only one that SS is essential to is SpaceX.

I know my startup, Gravitics, would be pretty bummed out if Starship doesn't make it to market. We can do smaller scale StarMax modules, but that would be sad. :-(

~Jon

Offline spacenut

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I voted 3-4, but after seeing all the pictures, it may take 6 months to repair the launch site damage, build a flame trench and a water suppression system.  In he meantime, fix any problems with the rocket and stage separation system.  It seems that if the Starship carrying crew needs to be able to separate and fly away from any danger, even if it has to do the belly flop vertical maneuver and soft land in the ocean. 

Offline Robotbeat

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Starship is no longer just a project of a visionary, today there are many strategic interests in launching this ship, which is why I think that everything that is necessary will move quickly.

not really.
Jim is correct. DoD don't need it but nice to have in their inventory. NASA is in process of selecting 2nd HLS that won't rely on SS. The only one that SS is essential to is SpaceX.
NASA doesn’t have the money for a second HLS, it wouldn’t happen until the 2030s. Starship is also the only hope NASA has of affording a surface Mars program within the next 20 years.
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Offline chopsticks

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Starship is no longer just a project of a visionary, today there are many strategic interests in launching this ship, which is why I think that everything that is necessary will move quickly.

not really.
Jim is correct. DoD don't need it but nice to have in their inventory. NASA is in process of selecting 2nd HLS that won't rely on SS. The only one that SS is essential to is SpaceX.
NASA doesn’t have the money for a second HLS, it wouldn’t happen until the 2030s. Starship is also the only hope NASA has of affording a surface Mars program within the next 20 years.
There's also Dearmoon, Isaacman, and the flight booked by that older couple.

Offline DanClemmensen

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Starship is no longer just a project of a visionary, today there are many strategic interests in launching this ship, which is why I think that everything that is necessary will move quickly.

not really.
Jim is correct. DoD don't need it but nice to have in their inventory. NASA is in process of selecting 2nd HLS that won't rely on SS. The only one that SS is essential to is SpaceX.
NASA doesn’t have the money for a second HLS, it wouldn’t happen until the 2030s. Starship is also the only hope NASA has of affording a surface Mars program within the next 20 years.
NASA has already committed to funding a second HLS: it's called Starship HLS Option B. It's the third HLS (appendix P) that is to be independent of Starship.

Offline Robotbeat

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How much funding? Can't be very much. It hasn't been selected yet. Again, I don't think a second HLS will land with crew before 2030 at the earliest.

Heck, September 2029 is the current NET date for Artemis V, the first Artemis surface mission that doesn't already have Starship assigned to it. There's virtually no way in heck there'll be a second HLS flying with crew before the 2030s.
« Last Edit: 04/26/2023 04:13 am by Robotbeat »
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Offline DanClemmensen

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How much funding? Can't be very much. It hasn't been selected yet. Again, I don't think a second HLS will land with crew before 2030 at the earliest.

Heck, September 2029 is the current NET date for Artemis V, the first Artemis surface mission that doesn't already have Starship assigned to it. There's virtually no way in heck there'll be a second HLS flying with crew before the 2030s.
No Appendix P award yet, but some studies totaling $146 million were funded in September 2021 for the follow-on lander.
   https://www.nasa.gov/press-release/nasa-selects-five-us-companies-to-mature-artemis-lander-concepts

Offline john smith 19

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I don't really have a strong handle on this. Then I heard that Musk was talking 2 months.

"Elon time" is a well known phenomena and I've heard people say you need to triple any estimate he makes.

But then I saw the foundation damage done by the SS take off.

SX has launched a lot of rockets and it's always taken them (like every other VTO launch company) some time to get there pad back in shape to launch another one.

I don't think I've ever seen that serious an amount of damage to the ground following a launch.

Obviously they'll need to work on the pad repair/upgrade in parallel with the MIB.

The joker in the pack is what if the MIB require a substantial pad modification that wasn't planned in the repair/upgrade?

Without the pad damage I could see 6-9 months but I've voted 10-12 with it.  :(

As always the real clock is the next Mars launch window, and wheather they can get something in shape to put through it.

Short of death or a serious incapacitating illness Musk won't quit so time will tell who are the optimists and who are the realists.  :(
« Last Edit: 04/26/2023 07:24 pm by john smith 19 »
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Offline trimeta

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"Next launch in two months" isn't just Elon Time now: it's also Sen. Administrator Bill Nelson Time.

https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/1651638991853088768

Quote
Nelson says SpaceX has told NASA that it can repair the pad and prepare the next Starship in about 2 months. Last week’s failure is “not a big downer”.

Offline Lee Jay

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If their next launch happens before summer starts, I'll be absolutely floored.

Offline Redclaws

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If their next launch happens before summer starts, I'll be absolutely floored.

The solstice (June 21st this year) is actually *less* than 2 months away, and that’s the latest date that summer could be considered to start in the northern hemisphere…. So this isn’t as much of a statement as I think you intended?

Offline Lee Jay

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If their next launch happens before summer starts, I'll be absolutely floored.

The solstice (June 21st this year) is actually *less* than 2 months away, and that’s the latest date that summer could be considered to start in the northern hemisphere…. So this isn’t as much of a statement as I think you intended?

From 4/20 (launch) to 6/21 (two months).

Offline Robotbeat

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If their next launch happens before summer starts, I'll be absolutely floored.

The solstice (June 21st this year) is actually *less* than 2 months away, and that’s the latest date that summer could be considered to start in the northern hemisphere…. So this isn’t as much of a statement as I think you intended?

From 4/20 (launch) to 6/21 (two months).
Id also be floored. I don’t expect launch before 6 months, I voted 7-9.

I CAN see a booster on the pad by then as a thing that could happen.
« Last Edit: 04/27/2023 07:43 pm by Robotbeat »
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Offline jongoff

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If their next launch happens before summer starts, I'll be absolutely floored.

If they're ready to fly again before the end of June, I'll eat a hat with some ghost pepper sauce. There's no way that time estimate has any connection with reality.

~Jon

Offline Robotbeat

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If their next launch happens before summer starts, I'll be absolutely floored.

If they're ready to fly again before the end of June, I'll eat a hat with some ghost pepper sauce. There's no way that time estimate has any connection with reality.

~Jon
On the other hand, they did just demonstrate willingness to risk nuking their pad to save 3 months.
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Offline Lee Jay

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If their next launch happens before summer starts, I'll be absolutely floored.

If they're ready to fly again before the end of June, I'll eat a hat with some ghost pepper sauce. There's no way that time estimate has any connection with reality.

~Jon
On the other hand, they did just demonstrate willingness to risk nuking their pad to save 3 months.

It never occurred to me that they would half-fix it and demolish it again.  I suspect that, if they try it, they won't get a launch license.
« Last Edit: 04/27/2023 08:54 pm by Lee Jay »

Offline Zed_Noir

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If their next launch happens before summer starts, I'll be absolutely floored.

If they're ready to fly again before the end of June, I'll eat a hat with some ghost pepper sauce. There's no way that time estimate has any connection with reality.

~Jon
On the other hand, they did just demonstrate willingness to risk nuking their pad to save 3 months.

It never occurred to me that they would half-fix it and demolish it again.  I suspect that, if they try it, they won't get a launch license.

SpaceX might be planning to replaced most of the hardware for the orbital launch mount with hardware barged in from Florida. So rolling the dice with the old hardware is understandable.

The pacing item is how soon can SpaceX installed a blast diverter over a cured concrete slab, it seems to me.

Offline Robotbeat

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If their next launch happens before summer starts, I'll be absolutely floored.

If they're ready to fly again before the end of June, I'll eat a hat with some ghost pepper sauce. There's no way that time estimate has any connection with reality.

~Jon
On the other hand, they did just demonstrate willingness to risk nuking their pad to save 3 months.

It never occurred to me that they would half-fix it and demolish it again.  I suspect that, if they try it, they won't get a launch license.
I just mean they have, um, drive to go quickly that is unusual.
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Offline jongoff

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If their next launch happens before summer starts, I'll be absolutely floored.

If they're ready to fly again before the end of June, I'll eat a hat with some ghost pepper sauce. There's no way that time estimate has any connection with reality.

~Jon
On the other hand, they did just demonstrate willingness to risk nuking their pad to save 3 months.

It never occurred to me that they would half-fix it and demolish it again.  I suspect that, if they try it, they won't get a launch license.
I just mean they have, um, drive to go quickly that is unusual.

I'm not too worried about having to eat that hat, or the ghost pepper sauce.

~Jon

Offline joek

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I'm not too worried about having to eat that hat, or the ghost pepper sauce.

Agree; and I'll join you if it happens. Two months? Improbable. Sometime this "summer"? Possible. That based on Nelson's statements (what he said, not what was generally reported).

Even though I voted 6-7mo, I rate "summer" possible because: SpaceX runs BC 24x7; they have some parts/spares over in FL; and some of the modifications required were already in plan. (How much they might have done in terms of contingency planning unknown, but expect there was some.)

Offline Remes

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February 2024

Kind of this post from me https://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=56960.msg2439378#msg2439378 explains it more or less.

One can ignore for a moment regulatory hurdles, but you need a flame diverter and deluge, and before you build that, you need to jump over regulatory hurdles.

FAA could be ignored, but I doubt that behavior of the stack was acceptable. And before you implement all your changes and improvements (FTS, degradation, ...). You can jump ahead and hope your changes will be accepted. That might half the time required or triple it. Will they have to redesign the layout of the launch base for more safety? This will require even more regulatory work, before the technology can be installed.

Changes will be tested. Lot of action on the new OLM. And with that level of repeatability and variance they will make more errors which cost time.

Not sure about the maturity of the engines. All defect engines knocked out by debris or are there still issues? I kind of believe there is work necessary too. It will be a great engine, when it matures.

I think the cabling of the OLM and partly sensors/actuators are toast. Inside the OLM there is not much place. Serviceability is an issue. Those man lifts were good and fast for hopper and partly for starship. For that size of a stack it is tedious, slow, I assume it's forbidden to work on multiple levels with several man lifts (no protection against falling elements), no protection against weather... What everyone else uses is faster, cleaner, allow work on multiple levels, and so on.

The work packages will interfere.

I thought the rocket wouldn't reach 100m. But it did and even much more and it was great to watch. Really, some of the things were I'm grateful that I could (not in person) witness it. So believe it or not, I'm not anti SpaceX and I wish they would be launching every month. But at the moment I don't believe that will happen for quite some time.

Offline john smith 19

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Agree; and I'll join you if it happens. Two months? Improbable. Sometime this "summer"? Possible. That based on
Even though I voted 6-7mo, I rate "summer" possible because: SpaceX runs BC 24x7; they have some parts/spares over in FL; and some of the modifications required were already in plan. (How much they might have done in terms of contingency planning unknown, but expect there was some.)
That's about a 3 hour video.

Could you give some indications of where on that timeline he refers to this?
MCT ITS BFR SS. The worlds first Methane fueled FFSC engined CFRP SS structure A380 sized aerospaceplane tail sitter capable of Earth & Mars atmospheric flight.First flight to Mars by end of 2022 TBC. T&C apply. Trust nothing. Run your own #s "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof" R. Simberg."Competitve" means cheaper ¬cheap SCramjet proposed 1956. First +ve thrust 2004. US R&D spend to date > $10Bn. #deployed designs. Zero.

Offline john smith 19

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It never occurred to me that they would half-fix it and demolish it again.  I suspect that, if they try it, they won't get a launch license.
Good point. FAA licenses are focussed on protecting the public and that much debris at ground level didn't look too safe.

I'm not sure how much jurisdiction FAA has of the launch infrastructure but I'm guessing (to the highest extent possible) they will want to become very familar with what SX are doing.
MCT ITS BFR SS. The worlds first Methane fueled FFSC engined CFRP SS structure A380 sized aerospaceplane tail sitter capable of Earth & Mars atmospheric flight.First flight to Mars by end of 2022 TBC. T&C apply. Trust nothing. Run your own #s "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof" R. Simberg."Competitve" means cheaper ¬cheap SCramjet proposed 1956. First +ve thrust 2004. US R&D spend to date > $10Bn. #deployed designs. Zero.

Offline joek

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Could you give some indications of where on that timeline he refers to this?
Comment just above video: "28:50"

Offline Robotbeat

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It never occurred to me that they would half-fix it and demolish it again.  I suspect that, if they try it, they won't get a launch license.
Good point. FAA licenses are focussed on protecting the public and that much debris at ground level didn't look too safe.


Wrong. The FAA doesn’t judge based on what LOOKS safe, but what IS safe. They’re professionals, not armchair worriers. They had required SpaceX to prepare for a full explosion of the vehicle on the pad and anywhere along the flight corridor, which would’ve been much worse than a few chunks of concrete near the launch site.
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Offline john smith 19

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"Next launch in two months" isn't just Elon Time now: it's also Sen. Administrator Bill Nelson Time.

https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/1651638991853088768

Quote
Nelson says SpaceX has told NASA that it can repair the pad and prepare the next Starship in about 2 months. Last week’s failure is “not a big downer”.
I'm pretty sure he had to give up being a Senator to take the NASA Administrator role.

Disappointing a Senator is like killing a puppy on live TV. :(

Giving (what turns out to be) an unrealistic timescale to the NASA Administrator is more or less BAU to a Big Aerospace CEO.

But maybe Musk does know something we don't about SX's ability to deliver we don't and we are all being unnecessarily cynical about their chances.
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Offline john smith 19

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Wrong. The FAA doesn’t judge based on what LOOKS safe, but what IS safe. They’re professionals, not armchair worriers. They had required SpaceX to prepare for a full explosion of the vehicle on the pad and anywhere along the flight corridor, which would’ve been much worse than a few chunks of concrete near the launch site.
I'm quite well aware of the difference.

And if the FAA reckon SX did a good enough job planning for this level of launch mishap this time they should have no more trouble than usual getting their next launch licence.

Time will tell. In this case Musk reckons about the end of June, early July.

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Offline john smith 19

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Maybe a bit optimistic; voted 5-6mo: 3-4mo for repairs-construction; another 2-3mo for test-validation (several static fires etc.).  Typical project management contingency of 30% would bring that to 8-9mo. Might also be longer if they succumb to "version 2" affliction, but historically that has not been their MO; or if the data they got suggests substantive changes to the booster which are not in plan for B9. Give it 3-4 weeks and expect significant increase in accuracy of projections.
This will be version 2.

Wheather they succumb to "verson 2 syndrome" is a different matter.  :(
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Offline trimeta

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I'm pretty sure he had to give up being a Senator to take the NASA Administrator role.
I was (lightly) mocking how Bill Nelson still refers to himself as a Senator (e.g., the first sentence of his official NASA biography is "Sen. Bill Nelson was sworn in as the 14th NASA administrator on May 3, 2021, tasked with carrying out the Biden-Harris administration’s vision for the agency").

Offline laszlo

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I'm pretty sure he had to give up being a Senator to take the NASA Administrator role.
I was (lightly) mocking how Bill Nelson still refers to himself as a Senator (e.g., the first sentence of his official NASA biography is "Sen. Bill Nelson was sworn in as the 14th NASA administrator on May 3, 2021, tasked with carrying out the Biden-Harris administration’s vision for the agency").

It's not him exercising an ego trip, it's a convention in the US that government employees keep their highest title as an honorific when they retire from government service. So a retired Eisenhower was first referred to as "General" when being formally addressed after he left the Army and later as "Mr. President" when his 2nd term had ended. Nelson is just following US convention.

Offline john smith 19

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It's not him exercising an ego trip, it's a convention in the US that government employees keep their highest title as an honorific when they retire from government service. So a retired Eisenhower was first referred to as "General" when being formally addressed after he left the Army and later as "Mr. President" when his 2nd term had ended. Nelson is just following US convention.
I did not know this.
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Offline trimeta

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Elon is currently estimating somewhere in the range of July/August:

https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1662263704262680577

Quote
Major launchpad upgrades should be complete in about a month, then another month of rocket testing on pad, then flight 2 of Starship

With Elon Time, I'm feeling pretty good about having voted September/October.

Offline jongoff

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Elon is currently estimating somewhere in the range of July/August:

https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1662263704262680577

Quote
Major launchpad upgrades should be complete in about a month, then another month of rocket testing on pad, then flight 2 of Starship

With Elon Time, I'm feeling pretty good about having voted September/October.

Yeah, he was saying 1-2 months a month ago, so I still think sometime Sep-Oct or Nov-Jan is the most likely. If I had to vote again now, I might bump my vote down a not from Nov-Jan to Sep-Oct for when they'll be technically ready to fly. As for when they'll have all the permissions and such, I think they'll still be pretty lucky to get the next flight off before the end of the year.

~Jon

Offline deltaV

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Back on April 21 Elon estimated 1-2 months until flight. On May 26 he estimated 2 months. Today Elon's estimate is
Quote
6 to 8 weeks
https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1668622531534934022

At this rate Starship will never launch. :-(
« Last Edit: 06/14/2023 12:10 am by deltaV »

Offline eric z

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 I predict a Halloween launch, that will go smoothly. ;D

Offline Lee Jay

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Back on April 21 Elon estimated 1-2 months until flight. On May 26 he estimated 2 months. Today Elon's estimate is
Quote
6 to 8 weeks
https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1668622531534934022

At this rate Starship will never launch. :-(

Slipping one week per week.  Who would have predicted that (aside from everyone).

Offline Vahe231991

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Back on April 21 Elon estimated 1-2 months until flight. On May 26 he estimated 2 months. Today Elon's estimate is
Quote
6 to 8 weeks
https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1668622531534934022

At this rate Starship will never launch. :-(

Slipping one week per week.  Who would have predicted that (aside from everyone).
The timing of a WDR and launch of each Starship is quite different from that of the time it takes to repair the Starbase after a launch. Therefore, 6-8 weeks equals 42 to 56 days, so Elon Musk is hoping to have the second Starship launch take place in late July or August.

Offline jongoff

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Slipping one week per week.  Who would have predicted that (aside from everyone).

It sounds like they're making good progress, but I agree that his original 1-2mos on 4/21 was laughable, and the fact that they're still slipping ~1wk/wk makes me feel pretty good about my guess of Nov-Jan. The good news is that there's at least a nonzero chance they'll prove me wrong. I'd love to see them get another flight off this year.

I'm also curious how well the cooled diverter plate is going to work in practice. If they can get to the point where a launch doesn't require half a year of pad repairs before they can try again, they'll be able to start moving a lot more quickly. I'd love to see them get Starship flying, and start the work on debugging upper stage reuse and in-space refueling.

~Jon

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Slipping one week per week.  Who would have predicted that (aside from everyone).

It sounds like they're making good progress, but I agree that his original 1-2mos on 4/21 was laughable, and the fact that they're still slipping ~1wk/wk makes me feel pretty good about my guess of Nov-Jan. The good news is that there's at least a nonzero chance they'll prove me wrong. I'd love to see them get another flight off this year.

~Jon

The other potential issue is the workers at the pad.  Having to clean up and vacate each Static Fire and tank testing are issues with worker productivity out at the pad.  Tanking has been moved to Massey Site but Static Fires will be an ongoing productivity issue with Pad Re-construction.
It's Tony De La Rosa, ...I don't create this stuff, I just report it.

Offline Lee Jay

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Slipping one week per week.  Who would have predicted that (aside from everyone).

It sounds like they're making good progress, but I agree that his original 1-2mos on 4/21 was laughable, and the fact that they're still slipping ~1wk/wk makes me feel pretty good about my guess of Nov-Jan. The good news is that there's at least a nonzero chance they'll prove me wrong.

I thought the good news was that you're not going to have to eat a hat with ghost pepper sauce on it.

Offline jongoff

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Slipping one week per week.  Who would have predicted that (aside from everyone).

It sounds like they're making good progress, but I agree that his original 1-2mos on 4/21 was laughable, and the fact that they're still slipping ~1wk/wk makes me feel pretty good about my guess of Nov-Jan. The good news is that there's at least a nonzero chance they'll prove me wrong.

I thought the good news was that you're not going to have to eat a hat with ghost pepper sauce on it.

That too.

With how much of a spice wimp I am, that might have killed me. :-)

~Jon

Offline M.E.T.

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Ramses or Khufu (or whoever) builds the Great Pyramid, only for some contemporary stonemason to scoff self righteously because the pharaoh said he would build it in 20 years instead of the 40 years it ended up taking.

4000 years later ignorant people marvel at its magnificence, too stupid to realise that it could have been 4020 years old if only Ramses hadn’t been such a liar.

« Last Edit: 06/14/2023 02:30 pm by M.E.T. »

Offline Vahe231991

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Ramses or Khufu (or whoever) builds the Great Pyramid, only for some contemporary stonemason to scoff self righteously because the pharaoh said he would build it in 20 years instead of the 40 years it ended up taking.

4000 years later ignorant people marvel at its magnificence, too stupid to realise that it could have been 4020 years old if only Ramses hadn’t been such a liar.
There's no equivalency between the time it takes to launch a Starship and the time it took for the Great Pyramids of Giza to be built because the Starship is constructed from stainless steel and does not require the massive pool of laborers that Egyptian kings/pharaohs recruited to build the pyramids.

Offline Vultur

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Ramses or Khufu (or whoever) builds the Great Pyramid, only for some contemporary stonemason to scoff self righteously because the pharaoh said he would build it in 20 years instead of the 40 years it ended up taking.

4000 years later ignorant people marvel at its magnificence, too stupid to realise that it could have been 4020 years old if only Ramses hadn’t been such a liar.
There's no equivalency between the time it takes to launch a Starship and the time it took for the Great Pyramids of Giza to be built because the Starship is constructed from stainless steel and does not require the massive pool of laborers that Egyptian kings/pharaohs recruited to build the pyramids.

I believe the point is that the achievement will be remembered, not the delays to get there.

Offline jongoff

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If their next launch happens before summer starts, I'll be absolutely floored.

If they're ready to fly again before the end of June, I'll eat a hat with some ghost pepper sauce. There's no way that time estimate has any connection with reality.

~Jon

Happy "I Don't Have to Eat a Hat With Ghost Pepper Sauce" Day, to those who celebrate.

~Jon

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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So exactly 3 months after the first launch SpaceX has:

* Repaired the OLM sufficiently to put B9 on it in preparation for B9 tests and static fire
* Repaired / upgraded the orbital tank farm
* Done a first test of the water deluge system (more work and testing to go)
* Static fired S25







5-6 months from 1st flight to be ready (ignoring regulatory approvals) looks favourite to me

Offline Kspbutitscursed

i reckon late august or earlier
I attempt to fly in ksp
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Offline rpapo

If Elon gives a time from now, double it at least, and it may or may not happen, but probably will.

If the NET estimate comes from anyone else inside of SpaceX, then add somewhere between 50 and 80% and it will almost assuredly happen.
« Last Edit: 07/23/2023 12:10 pm by rpapo »
Following the space program since before Apollo 8.

Offline jongoff

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So exactly 3 months after the first launch SpaceX has:

* Repaired the OLM sufficiently to put B9 on it in preparation for B9 tests and static fire
* Repaired / upgraded the orbital tank farm
* Done a first test of the water deluge system (more work and testing to go)
* Static fired S25

5-6 months from 1st flight to be ready (ignoring regulatory approvals) looks favourite to me

5-6mos (Sep/Oct) was the most popular time window, and it definitely seems to be in play. I'd be really surprised if it was less time, and not super surprised if it turned into 7-9mos (what I voted for).

~Jon


Offline AmigaClone

At this point, I can see progress at Boca Chica to be far enough along that some Tank Watchers would blame the FAA or the lawsuit for any delay in the second flight of Starship. Personally I don't see the former as the primary reason for any launch being delayed for several months after SpaceX is ready to make a second attempt.

Offline Lars-J

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At this point, I can see progress at Boca Chica to be far enough along that some Tank Watchers would blame the FAA or the lawsuit for any delay in the second flight of Starship. Personally I don't see the former as the primary reason for any launch being delayed for several months after SpaceX is ready to make a second attempt.

If those tank watchers only blame the FAA or lawsuits for delays beyond mid-August, that would IMO be not be accurate. Yes, a lot of work has been done. But much remains, that is less visible.

The whole hot staging components have yet to go through ground testing, and anything discovered there might lead to further changes.

The next launch is not happening in August, but possibly in September, but October IMO still looks like the best bet for SpaceX being ready. November and beyond is still in play.

Offline Lee Jay

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At this point, I can see progress at Boca Chica to be far enough along that some Tank Watchers would blame the FAA or the lawsuit for any delay in the second flight of Starship. Personally I don't see the former as the primary reason for any launch being delayed for several months after SpaceX is ready to make a second attempt.

If those tank watchers only blame the FAA or lawsuits for delays beyond mid-August, that would IMO be not be accurate. Yes, a lot of work has been done. But much remains, that is less visible.

The whole hot staging components have yet to go through ground testing, and anything discovered there might lead to further changes.

Do we know the status of the FTS certification as well?

Offline deltaV

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Back on April 21 Elon estimated 1-2 months until flight. On May 26 he estimated 2 months. Today Elon's estimate is
Quote
6 to 8 weeks
[twitter link snipped]

At this rate Starship will never launch. :-(

They're apparently planning on NET August 31 (two weeks and a day from now): https://twitter.com/NASASpaceflight/status/1691829712203497738.

I doubt they'll actually launch on that day but at least they're getting closer to launch: 2 weeks to go instead of 4-8 weeks, slipping about 2-4 weeks in the past 2 months.
« Last Edit: 08/16/2023 05:44 pm by deltaV »

Offline jongoff

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Back on April 21 Elon estimated 1-2 months until flight. On May 26 he estimated 2 months. Today Elon's estimate is
Quote
6 to 8 weeks
[twitter link snipped]

At this rate Starship will never launch. :-(

They're apparently planning on NET August 31 (two weeks and a day from now): https://twitter.com/NASASpaceflight/status/1691829712203497738.

I doubt they'll actually launch on that day but at least they're getting closer to launch: 2 weeks to go instead of 4-8 weeks, slipping about 2-4 weeks in the past 2 months.

Heavy emphasis on the "No Earlier Than"... Seriously, I don't get why they post NET dates that have literally 0% chance of happening.

It would be like me saying that was going to be a billionaire NET tomorrow. Technically true, but practically worthless.

~Jon

Offline Vahe231991

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Back on April 21 Elon estimated 1-2 months until flight. On May 26 he estimated 2 months. Today Elon's estimate is
Quote
6 to 8 weeks
[twitter link snipped]

At this rate Starship will never launch. :-(

They're apparently planning on NET August 31 (two weeks and a day from now): https://twitter.com/NASASpaceflight/status/1691829712203497738.

I doubt they'll actually launch on that day but at least they're getting closer to launch: 2 weeks to go instead of 4-8 weeks, slipping about 2-4 weeks in the past 2 months.

Heavy emphasis on the "No Earlier Than"... Seriously, I don't get why they post NET dates that have literally 0% chance of happening.

It would be like me saying that was going to be a billionaire NET tomorrow. Technically true, but practically worthless.

~Jon
The first Starship launch had been scheduled for April 17 but was delayed by three days, so it's possible that the initial target launch date for the second Starship launch could be postponed by a few days.

Offline Hog

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The first Starship launch had been scheduled for April 17 but was delayed by three days, so it's possible that the initial target launch date for the second Starship launch could be postponed by a few days.
Source?
Paul

Offline deltaV

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https://twitter.com/devenperez/status/1694404156373573701

Quote
Previously aiming for a NET August 31st date, SpaceX is now targeting NET September 8th for the second Integrated Test Flight of Starship.

It looks like September/October 2023 will probably win this poll.

Offline jongoff

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https://twitter.com/devenperez/status/1694404156373573701

Quote
Previously aiming for a NET August 31st date, SpaceX is now targeting NET September 8th for the second Integrated Test Flight of Starship.

It looks like September/October 2023 will probably win this poll.

I agree that seems most likely at this point -- it was also the most popular guess back when we ran the poll. The launch itself, which is also constrained by regulatory items that weren't part of the poll could still theoretically slip into Nov/Dec, but it seems unlikely (barring something unexpected) that SpaceX won't be technically ready to launch again before the end of October.

(Pinning down when they're actually 100% technically ready may only be something that can be done in hindsight after the launch though.).

~Jon
« Last Edit: 08/23/2023 07:56 pm by jongoff »

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Elon has called it:

https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/1699233677979390280

Quote
Starship is ready to launch, awaiting FAA license approval

I’m a bit surprised there isn’t a final
WDR or other test

Edit to add: may be just Elon putting more pressure on FAA to finish up?
« Last Edit: 09/06/2023 05:50 am by FutureSpaceTourist »

Offline Lee Jay

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Fully stacked doesn't mean ready to launch, regardless of what Elon says.  However, it looks likely that will occur during this month, baring an accident or testing failure of some sort.

Amazing that this group's prediction was vastly more accurate than that of the chief engineer.  My selection was November so I was off in the other direction.

Offline Robotbeat

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Yeah, I voted later. Elon always does a NET date and always is optimistic.
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Offline tyrred

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Jongoff, time for a new poll given the amount of speculation in a bunch of other threads?
« Last Edit: 09/07/2023 03:43 am by tyrred »

Offline jongoff

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Fully stacked doesn't mean ready to launch, regardless of what Elon says.  However, it looks likely that will occur during this month, baring an accident or testing failure of some sort.

Amazing that this group's prediction was vastly more accurate than that of the chief engineer.  My selection was November so I was off in the other direction.

Agreed on all points -- we'll probably only really know when it was ready in hindsight, but it'll probably be sometime this month, and yeah the wisdom of crowds seems to have done pretty well here.

~Jon

Offline jongoff

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As most of you probably already saw, the FAA closed out the investigation of the IFT-1 flight this morning. From their statement:

"The closure of the mishap investigation does not signal an immediate resumption of Starship launches at Boca Chica. SpaceX must implement all corrective actions that impact public safety and apply for and receive a license modification from the FAA that addresses all safety, environmental and other applicable regulatory  requirements prior to the next Starship launch."

I take this to mean that there are at least some corrective actions that are still in process, and that contra Elon's tweet from earlier in the month, we're not quite yet at the "technically ready to fly again" state that was the focus of this poll. That said, we might only be a few days out from that point, or it could still be a few weeks out. I still think the Sep/Oct folks are going to win this one, but I'm not going to call it until we know everything is closed out, and that they're really just waiting for paperwork.

~Jon

Offline saturnsky

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According to story posted by CNBC,,,FAA requiring 62 changes in Starship and ground facilities,,,sounds like modifications of inflight and ground support equipment....I would bet, as an outsider,,,next launch Jan of 24...

Offline jongoff

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According to story posted by CNBC,,,FAA requiring 62 changes in Starship and ground facilities,,,sounds like modifications of inflight and ground support equipment....I would bet, as an outsider,,,next launch Jan of 24...

Saturnsky, I think you may be misreading this. The corrective actions were mostly ones recommended by SpaceX as part of their mishap report, and many of them are already completed. It's possible that there are still one or more long-lead items that isn't closed out. But I think the odds of them having all the technical items closed out this month are pretty good. I think the only thing that would push a next flight out till 2024 is if they ran into some environmental-related permitting delays (which for purposes of this poll I would not count under "technical readiness").

~Jon
« Last Edit: 09/08/2023 05:29 pm by jongoff »

Offline saturnsky

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I hope your right,,notification letter from FAA posted on their website,, full of bureaucratic posturing, but concerns with pad, redesign of hardware to prevent leaks and fires, and autonomous flight safety system,,,,,the re applying for a new launch license,,

Offline trimeta

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I hope your right,,notification letter from FAA posted on their website,, full of bureaucratic posturing, but concerns with pad, redesign of hardware to prevent leaks and fires, and autonomous flight safety system,,,,,the re applying for a new launch license,,
Completely coincidentally, SpaceX posted an update talking about how they've "made significant upgrades to the orbital launch mount and pad system," "implemented leak mitigations and improved testing on both engine and booster hardware," "significantly expanded Super Heavy’s pre-existing fire suppression system in order to mitigate against future engine bay fires," and "enhanced and requalified the AFSS to improve system reliability." I'm sure those changes are unrelated to the FAA report discussing those very same issues, and definitely don't mean that SpaceX has already closed them out...

Offline saturnsky

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So,,to resubmit a new launch request,,,a month???

Offline Robotbeat

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Probably just days. Anyway, I voted November-January, and it looks like I’m gonna be too pessimistic again.
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Offline jongoff

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Does anyone have any heartburn with me provisionally calling this for September 2023? From all I can tell from public sources, and L2, it doesn't sound like there are any remaining launch-gating technical work on Starship/Superheavy or the launch site. It sounds like there are a small number of tasks that still have to happen once the launch license is approved, like activating the FTS, etc. But all of those sound like ones that can take place in short order once the launch license is approved. Am I wrong? Is anyone aware of any work that's still open that needs to happen prior to launch that isn't waiting on the launch license?

If so, it looks like the wisdom of crowds really won this time around. Just under 5 months from the initial launch attempt is impressively fast. As mentioned previously, I had estimated 6-9 months, so I was a bit on the pessimistic side (though closer than Elon's initial 2mos estimate). Very impressive.

Anyone want to take a guess on how long until launch? Should I do another poll, or do people think it's close enough to not be worth a separate poll?

Personal guess is that launch will most likely take place sometime in October. Theoretically it could still happen before the end of September, but that gives time for evaluations and any closeout tasks, but assumes no major delays due to environmental concerns, etc. It is still possible that some wildcard like the water permit issues could delay things into 2024, but my personal most likely guess is October.

~Jon

Offline ulm_atms

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Does anyone have any heartburn with me provisionally calling this for September 2023? From all I can tell from public sources, and L2, it doesn't sound like there are any remaining launch-gating technical work on Starship/Superheavy or the launch site. It sounds like there are a small number of tasks that still have to happen once the launch license is approved, like activating the FTS, etc. But all of those sound like ones that can take place in short order once the launch license is approved. Am I wrong? Is anyone aware of any work that's still open that needs to happen prior to launch that isn't waiting on the launch license?

If so, it looks like the wisdom of crowds really won this time around. Just under 5 months from the initial launch attempt is impressively fast. As mentioned previously, I had estimated 6-9 months, so I was a bit on the pessimistic side (though closer than Elon's initial 2mos estimate). Very impressive.

Anyone want to take a guess on how long until launch? Should I do another poll, or do people think it's close enough to not be worth a separate poll?

Personal guess is that launch will most likely take place sometime in October. Theoretically it could still happen before the end of September, but that gives time for evaluations and any closeout tasks, but assumes no major delays due to environmental concerns, etc. It is still possible that some wildcard like the water permit issues could delay things into 2024, but my personal most likely guess is October.

~Jon
So start another poll for which day they will launch in October.  ;D

I fully believe polls here are a good way to have fun with each other on this forum.  The polls might be a technical poll but for some reason on polls....the comments never turn into any heated back and forth like most of the threads do.  Hell, I've seen members add polls to a thread due to a heated discussion.  Once they post the poll, people kinda start laughing and things seem to simmer down.  Hell, I've seen multiple polls asking when they think a thread will be locked by all the negative back and fourth.

Poll away!!

Offline jongoff

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Ok, give me a minute, and I'll put together a new poll.

Offline jongoff

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Offline Lee Jay

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Does anyone have any heartburn with me provisionally calling this for September 2023? From all I can tell from public sources, and L2, it doesn't sound like there are any remaining launch-gating technical work on Starship/Superheavy or the launch site. It sounds like there are a small number of tasks that still have to happen once the launch license is approved, like activating the FTS, etc. But all of those sound like ones that can take place in short order once the launch license is approved. Am I wrong? Is anyone aware of any work that's still open that needs to happen prior to launch that isn't waiting on the launch license?

The destacking and comments in various places indicate that the vehicle is *almost* ready, but not quite.  I'm still guessing this month at this point.

Offline jongoff

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Does anyone have any heartburn with me provisionally calling this for September 2023? From all I can tell from public sources, and L2, it doesn't sound like there are any remaining launch-gating technical work on Starship/Superheavy or the launch site. It sounds like there are a small number of tasks that still have to happen once the launch license is approved, like activating the FTS, etc. But all of those sound like ones that can take place in short order once the launch license is approved. Am I wrong? Is anyone aware of any work that's still open that needs to happen prior to launch that isn't waiting on the launch license?

The destacking and comments in various places indicate that the vehicle is *almost* ready, but not quite.  I'm still guessing this month at this point.

I saw the same thing. Very unlikely to push into the next voting period (November), but apparently it's not all the way ready yet. Just really close.

~Jon

Offline DanClemmensen

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Does anyone have any heartburn with me provisionally calling this for September 2023? From all I can tell from public sources, and L2, it doesn't sound like there are any remaining launch-gating technical work on Starship/Superheavy or the launch site. It sounds like there are a small number of tasks that still have to happen once the launch license is approved, like activating the FTS, etc. But all of those sound like ones that can take place in short order once the launch license is approved. Am I wrong? Is anyone aware of any work that's still open that needs to happen prior to launch that isn't waiting on the launch license?

The destacking and comments in various places indicate that the vehicle is *almost* ready, but not quite.  I'm still guessing this month at this point.
As long as we are speculating, my speculation is that it was ready and they would have launched it, but they now think the license delay gives them time to add some minor improvements without affecting the actual launch date.

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Offline Lee Jay

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And now it's destacked again.  I don't think I'd call this one until at least a WDR or static fire.

Offline Zed_Noir

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And now it's destacked again.  I don't think I'd call this one until at least a WDR or static fire.
They have to destacked to installed the flight termination ordnance.

Not sure it is worthwhile to do static fire with 33 engines than to launch the stack. There is a risk
of damaging the pad and the launch infrastructure from prolong static fire.

Also it is preferable to have the stack down range over water in the event of a Ka-boom rather than sitting on the pad.

Offline DanClemmensen

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And now it's destacked again.  I don't think I'd call this one until at least a WDR or static fire.
Yeah, it was only stacked as part of the Cybertruck photo-op  ;)

Offline ZachS09

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And now it's destacked again.  I don't think I'd call this one until at least a WDR or static fire.
Yeah, it was only stacked as part of the Cybertruck photo-op  ;)


Is that true? Or are you pulling our legs?
Liftoff for St. Jude's! Go Dragon, Go Falcon, Godspeed Inspiration4!

Offline DanClemmensen

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And now it's destacked again.  I don't think I'd call this one until at least a WDR or static fire.
Yeah, it was only stacked as part of the Cybertruck photo-op  ;)


Is that true? Or are you pulling our legs?
It was intended as a joke, hence the emoji. I have exactly zero info except what's posted here.

Offline Lee Jay

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And now it's destacked again.  I don't think I'd call this one until at least a WDR or static fire.

Well, there's a WDR today, so pending its success (obviously) and decent data review, I'd be good with calling this one.

Offline Robotbeat

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I think there’s not any easy way to consider starship “ready” until it has literally launched. If they get delayed for weather, for instance, I’m sure they’d take that time to check out additional systems.

It’s not like SLS where there’s a limited number of rollouts, etc, so they have to artificially limit such things.
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Offline DanClemmensen

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I think there’s not any easy way to consider starship “ready” until it has literally launched. If they get delayed for weather, for instance, I’m sure they’d take that time to check out additional systems.

It’s not like SLS where there’s a limited number of rollouts, etc, so they have to artificially limit such things.
As a Moon rocket, SLS launches only in a certain window of about 2 weeks each month (at least for Artemis I), so it aimed to be ready at the beginning of the window. For Starship's IFT, pretty much any day will do.

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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This time I believe it:

twitter.com/spacex/status/1716979479845953646

Quote
Starship and Super Heavy were loaded with more than 10 million pounds of propellant today in a flight-like rehearsal ahead of launch

https://twitter.com/spacex/status/1716979627154149710

Quote
Vehicle is ready for the second test flight of a fully integrated Starship, pending regulatory approval

I don’t think FTS isn’t installed yet, but I assume SpaceX will wait for regulatory approval before doing that.

Online eeergo

Wording is exactly the same as Musk's tweet in Sept 6th. Wonder what was ready then (pending regulatory approval, of course, of course), became not ready in the interim, and took 1.5 months to make ready again. Assuming it's a real "ready pending approval" and not another "ready-but-not-quite".
-DaviD-

Offline spacenut

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Probably adding something new or improved to the rocket while waiting.  He is constantly improving the Raptor engine.  Other things could be upgraded.  He likes to simplify things.  Look how many changes to Falcon 9 he did before locking in the final version. 

Offline thespacecow

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Wonder what was ready then (pending regulatory approval, of course, of course), became not ready in the interim

What makes you think anything was made not ready in the interim?

Offline Lee Jay

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Wonder what was ready then (pending regulatory approval, of course, of course), became not ready in the interim

What makes you think anything was made not ready in the interim?

Two de-stacks (IIRC).
« Last Edit: 10/25/2023 01:54 pm by Lee Jay »

Online eeergo

Wonder what was ready then (pending regulatory approval, of course, of course), became not ready in the interim

What makes you think anything was made not ready in the interim?

Two de-stacks (IIRC).

And the basic fact they are announcing its readiness now as news, from which it follows it wasn't at some point right before.


To be clear, I think it was never really technically ready, at least with an appropriate level of confidence. But if folks accept Musk's announcement, something in the interim must have changed.
« Last Edit: 10/26/2023 12:51 am by eeergo »
-DaviD-

Offline thespacecow

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Wonder what was ready then (pending regulatory approval, of course, of course), became not ready in the interim

What makes you think anything was made not ready in the interim?

Two de-stacks (IIRC).

You know de-stacking indicate it's not ready ... how exactly?



And the basic fact they are announcing its readiness now as news, from which it follows it wasn't at some point right before.

They're announcing it because apparently some blockheads keep thinking they're not ready.

Note that the theory that SpaceX is not ready and are just using license delay as excuses is not scientific, because there's no way to falsify it. The only way SpaceX can prove they're ready is to actually launch the rocket, but they can't do it because they don't have license, so any theory claiming they're not ready cannot be falsified.

Offline Lee Jay

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Wonder what was ready then (pending regulatory approval, of course, of course), became not ready in the interim

What makes you think anything was made not ready in the interim?

Two de-stacks (IIRC).

You know de-stacking indicate it's not ready ... how exactly?

If it's not stacked, it's not ready, plus they wouldn't destack it if it didn't need some work that required the destacking.

Offline thespacecow

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Wonder what was ready then (pending regulatory approval, of course, of course), became not ready in the interim

What makes you think anything was made not ready in the interim?

Two de-stacks (IIRC).

You know de-stacking indicate it's not ready ... how exactly?

If it's not stacked, it's not ready, plus they wouldn't destack it if it didn't need some work that required the destacking.

LOL, they can literally restack in a few hours and be ready again, that's just grasping at straws.

Yes, they can and have done additional work, but that doesn't mean it wasn't ready to launch before. They can find additional things to do on the vehicle while waiting, just better use of the downtime i.e. make lemonade out of lemons, Gerst explained this to the reporters after the Senate hearing.

Offline Lee Jay

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Wonder what was ready then (pending regulatory approval, of course, of course), became not ready in the interim

What makes you think anything was made not ready in the interim?

Two de-stacks (IIRC).

You know de-stacking indicate it's not ready ... how exactly?

If it's not stacked, it's not ready, plus they wouldn't destack it if it didn't need some work that required the destacking.

LOL, they can literally restack in a few hours and be ready again, that's just grasping at straws.

The time between stacking and fuel loading for launch is a lot longer than a few hours.

Quote
Yes, they can and have done additional work, but that doesn't mean it wasn't ready to launch before. They can find additional things to do on the vehicle while waiting, just better use of the downtime i.e. make lemonade out of lemons, Gerst explained this to the reporters after the Senate hearing.

If the vehicle is working perfectly, to the degree you can test it without launching it, what else is there to do that would require a destack?  If it's not working perfectly, you aren't ready to start the countdown.

I've worked on many large, complex systems.  If everything is working - every sensor, every actuator, the entire data acquisition system, there isn't much to do unless you just want to clean and polish surfaces or something similar.  And if it is working, I certainly don't want to disassemble and reassemble it.  That can make things go wrong that weren't wrong before. 

Offline kenny008

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Just because they make an adjustment or enhancement does NOT mean it wasn't ready to fly before the adjustment.  If they have the time, and they have an update they'd like to install to increase the probability of success, they don't seem to hesitate to do it.  That doesn't necessarily mean they weren't ready to fly before the destack.  It might just mean they are now even more likely to have a successful launch because they had time to add additional enhancements.


Offline thespacecow

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LOL, they can literally restack in a few hours and be ready again, that's just grasping at straws.

The time between stacking and fuel loading for launch is a lot longer than a few hours.

Of course, that's because there're final launch preparations that they can only do right before launch, and they can't do them without a license. Things like installing FTS charges.


Quote
Quote
Yes, they can and have done additional work, but that doesn't mean it wasn't ready to launch before. They can find additional things to do on the vehicle while waiting, just better use of the downtime i.e. make lemonade out of lemons, Gerst explained this to the reporters after the Senate hearing.

If the vehicle is working perfectly, to the degree you can test it without launching it, what else is there to do that would require a destack?  If it's not working perfectly, you aren't ready to start the countdown.

This is a test flight, they do NOT need everything to work perfectly to launch, as shown in the first launch where they launched without all engines working.

It's also possible they're retrofitting enhancements from later booster builds to B9. Starship is still in prototype stage, still being constantly improved. It's not some final product where everything has been worked out to perfection.

Offline laszlo

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Of course, that's because there're final launch preparations that they can only do right before launch, and they can't do them without a license. Things like installing FTS charges.


And that, in a nutshell, is why the OP was incorrect not to include the FAA license and everything it depends on in factors to consider when determining readiness.

Offline Lars-J

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Wording is exactly the same as Musk's tweet in Sept 6th. Wonder what was ready then (pending regulatory approval, of course, of course), became not ready in the interim, and took 1.5 months to make ready again. Assuming it's a real "ready pending approval" and not another "ready-but-not-quite".

At some point we all get to the point where Musk's word becomes... less than credible. I'm personally way past it at this stage.

But even giving the statement the maximum amount of leeway, they might have considered themselves "ready" then, but they are certainly "more ready" now. They have presumably not been sitting doing nothing for the last few weeks. Additional tests, additional time to refine the software has probably been welcomed by most of the engineers involved.

Offline laszlo

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Wording is exactly the same as Musk's tweet in Sept 6th. Wonder what was ready then (pending regulatory approval, of course, of course), became not ready in the interim, and took 1.5 months to make ready again. Assuming it's a real "ready pending approval" and not another "ready-but-not-quite".

At some point we all get to the point where Musk's word becomes... less than credible. I'm personally way past it at this stage.

But even giving the statement the maximum amount of leeway, they might have considered themselves "ready" then, but they are certainly "more ready" now. They have presumably not been sitting doing nothing for the last few weeks. Additional tests, additional time to refine the software has probably been welcomed by most of the engineers involved.

Like the tiles falling off Columbia leading to a successful first flight of an entirely new system on only the second launch attempt because of the nearly 2 years additional time it provided for additional systems development/testing and crew training.

Offline Lee Jay

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Since they have a license and are again de-stacking, I would argue now that they are still not ready.  So 7-9 months seems to be the winner to me.

Offline jongoff

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Since they have a license and are again de-stacking, I would argue now that they are still not ready.  So 7-9 months seems to be the winner to me.

I was thinking the same thing. But I'm biased, since I voted for 7-9 mos...

~Jon

Offline Robotbeat

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I also voted 7 to 9 months but if you are even going to make any kind of distinction between being ready and actually launching, then I think they were ready earlier. They don’t have a planetary window or anything. So I honestly think that the original poll should’ve been worded for when it will actually launch, but since it isn’t I think we cannot include the regulatory delay so I would say probably six months
« Last Edit: 11/16/2023 06:51 pm by Robotbeat »
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Offline Metalskin

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I also voted 7 to 9 months but if you are even going to make any kind of distinction between being ready and actually launching, then I think they were ready earlier. They don’t have a planetary window or anything. So I honestly think that the original poll should’ve been worded for when it will actually launch, but since it isn’t I think we cannot include the regulatory delay so I would say probably six months

I've always interpreted the poll as when are they ready, not when do they launch. So I agree with the six months. A tad tough to call as we don't have complete visibility of when SpaceX was really ready. But as has been argued, a lot of the recent works could be just using the wait time for the launch license to their advantage.
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Offline thespacecow

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Since they have a license and are again de-stacking, I would argue now that they are still not ready.  So 7-9 months seems to be the winner to me.

I was thinking the same thing. But I'm biased, since I voted for 7-9 mos...

~Jon

So you're going to ignore your own rules set out in the first post? That's convenient...

Quote
I define ready as:
1- Pad and GSE hardware fully repaired.
2- Any modifications to the launch vehicle made to address other anomalies.
3- The next Starship/Superheavy stacked and put through testing including a static fire sufficient to give confidence that the pad is going to work for the next flight

They met this criteria months ago.

Offline Lars-J

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I also voted 7 to 9 months but if you are even going to make any kind of distinction between being ready and actually launching, then I think they were ready earlier. They don’t have a planetary window or anything. So I honestly think that the original poll should’ve been worded for when it will actually launch, but since it isn’t I think we cannot include the regulatory delay so I would say probably six months

I've always interpreted the poll as when are they ready, not when do they launch. So I agree with the six months. A tad tough to call as we don't have complete visibility of when SpaceX was really ready. But as has been argued, a lot of the recent works could be just using the wait time for the launch license to their advantage.

That's silly. Without interior visibility we don't know they were ready. What we DO KNOW is that they replaced grid fin actuators the day before launch.

Musk makes all kinds of claims. Some true, some that may come true in the future, and some that are just lies.

So the only reasonable way to judge it is when it ACTUALLY launched, not when someone claims to be ready. And having the permission/authority to launch is a critical aspect.

Offline DanClemmensen

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Musk makes all kinds of claims. Some true, some that may come true in the future, and some that are just lies.
Please be careful with your words. A "lie" is a statement that is known to the speaker to be wrong. These statements may have been wrong, but I think few if any of them were lies.

Offline Metalskin

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I also voted 7 to 9 months but if you are even going to make any kind of distinction between being ready and actually launching, then I think they were ready earlier. They don’t have a planetary window or anything. So I honestly think that the original poll should’ve been worded for when it will actually launch, but since it isn’t I think we cannot include the regulatory delay so I would say probably six months

I've always interpreted the poll as when are they ready, not when do they launch. So I agree with the six months. A tad tough to call as we don't have complete visibility of when SpaceX was really ready. But as has been argued, a lot of the recent works could be just using the wait time for the launch license to their advantage.

That's silly. Without interior visibility we don't know they were ready. What we DO KNOW is that they replaced grid fin actuators the day before launch.

Musk makes all kinds of claims. Some true, some that may come true in the future, and some that are just lies.

So the only reasonable way to judge it is when it ACTUALLY launched, not when someone claims to be ready. And having the permission/authority to launch is a critical aspect.

As I said "A tad tough to call as we don't have complete visibility of when SpaceX was really ready."

I agree, we have no internal view of when they are ready, and that should have been easy to infer from my comments. However I take a pragmatic approach and try not to be biased for or against Space X/Elon Musk.

Those who insist on trying to prove Elon's claims blindly and those who try and see everything in a negative/anti-Musk light, are the ones being silly.

--- edited for clarity ---
« Last Edit: 11/20/2023 07:19 pm by Metalskin »
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Offline laszlo

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Those who think these polls are anything beyond a drinking game are silly.

Offline thespacecow

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Even with the regulatory delays, Starship has a faster turnaround between 1st and 2nd launch than pretty much all the US smallsat launchers except Astra (although most smallsat launchers were able to reach orbit in 2nd launch)

Had there been no regulatory delays and SpaceX was able to launch Starship in late September/early October, they would have had a faster turnaround between 1st and 2nd launch than Falcon 9.

Offline trimeta

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Even with the regulatory delays, Starship has a faster turnaround between 1st and 2nd launch than pretty much all the US smallsat launchers except Astra (although most smallsat launchers were able to reach orbit in 2nd launch)

Had there been no regulatory delays and SpaceX was able to launch Starship in late September/early October, they would have had a faster turnaround between 1st and 2nd launch than Falcon 9.
In fairness, those smallsat launch companies had no heritage of space launch, quite the opposite of SpaceX in 2023. When SpaceX didn't have heritage of space launch, it took them almost a year between the first and second launch of a brand-new vehicle (Falcon 1).

At this point, SpaceX likely has more institutional knowledge regarding space launch than any organization which has ever existed.

Offline thespacecow

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Even with the regulatory delays, Starship has a faster turnaround between 1st and 2nd launch than pretty much all the US smallsat launchers except Astra (although most smallsat launchers were able to reach orbit in 2nd launch)

Had there been no regulatory delays and SpaceX was able to launch Starship in late September/early October, they would have had a faster turnaround between 1st and 2nd launch than Falcon 9.
In fairness, those smallsat launch companies had no heritage of space launch, quite the opposite of SpaceX in 2023. When SpaceX didn't have heritage of space launch, it took them almost a year between the first and second launch of a brand-new vehicle (Falcon 1).

At this point, SpaceX likely has more institutional knowledge regarding space launch than any organization which has ever existed.

True, but this is not universally accepted, many still claim SpaceX doesn't know what it's doing when it comes to Starship, including some on this forum.

 

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