Author Topic: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)  (Read 120768 times)

Online Chris Bergin

Shall we do a general thread for this given the standalone threads are specific to numerous elements.

Overall:

https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2022/02/focus-florida-east-coast-starship/

https://twitter.com/NASASpaceflight/status/1496214211848032260

And vid:



---

We'll be following this closely and often.
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Online Thorny

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #1 on: 02/22/2022 11:01 pm »
Excellent article! The only thing missing (unless I've overlooked it) is some info on the Falcon Heavy integration tower at 39A. Do we know when SpaceX will need it, and when construction will begin on it?

Online Chris Bergin

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Offline DOCinCT

Shall we do a general thread for this given the standalone threads are specific to numerous elements.

Overall:

https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2022/02/focus-florida-east-coast-starship/

https://twitter.com/NASASpaceflight/status/1496214211848032260

And vid:



---

We'll be following this closely and often.

Yes I think this would be good for non-members (there was a request for an aggregation thread in the SpaceX Boca Chica FB group)

Offline jpo234

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


Offline DigitalMan

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #6 on: 02/26/2022 03:33 pm »
Logically, this is the proper time to resume development at KSC. Look at the facts:

1. Originally, there were competing teams between KSC and Boca, but resource challenges and complications forced SpaceX to concentrate efforts and focus on one site.

2. SpaceX has a design for the tower, after iterating on the original design and has recently removed the previous structure from 39A.

3. KSC launches are planned to be part of the Artemis missions, so, it isn't realistic to wait very long to build out KSC

4. Lessons learned at Boca allow a fully built out stage 0 at KSC with no road blocks

5. SpaceX already has a FONSI for its EA at 39A, so a launch license from the FAA should be a normal procedural effort

Since SpaceX is planning two towers at Boca and looks to be doing the same here at KSC, it will be interesting to see what the conops are, a bunch of folks have already speculated on this subject a great deal.

Online kevinof

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #7 on: 02/26/2022 03:54 pm »
Logically, this is the proper time to resume development at KSC. Look at the facts:

1. Originally, there were competing teams between KSC and Boca, but resource challenges and complications forced SpaceX to concentrate efforts and focus on one site.

2. SpaceX has a design for the tower, after iterating on the original design and has recently removed the previous structure from 39A.

3. KSC launches are planned to be part of the Artemis missions, so, it isn't realistic to wait very long to build out KSC

4. Lessons learned at Boca allow a fully built out stage 0 at KSC with no road blocks

5. SpaceX already has a FONSI for its EA at 39A, so a launch license from the FAA should be a normal procedural effort

Since SpaceX is planning two towers at Boca and looks to be doing the same here at KSC, it will be interesting to see what the conops are, a bunch of folks have already speculated on this subject a great deal.
I don’t think Starship could have been developed and tested at KSC. The rapid pace, changes , frequent “kabooms” and failed landings just don’t suit what KSC is for. Boca was and is perfect for this activity and then when ready launch most from KSC.

They have also learned so much about the GSC, the tower and ground handling so progress should be faster at KSC.

Offline DigitalMan

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #8 on: 02/26/2022 04:01 pm »
Certainly not at the pad they were building in the 39A footprint, but perhaps look at the history of rocketry at KSC to see whether testing, kabooms, etc. are familiar to folks.

I agree however, that Boca is a well suited for developmental testing, whether it continues to be true depends on the FAA. SpaceX have outlived the usefulness of 12k altitude flights at this point.

Online DanClemmensen

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #9 on: 02/26/2022 04:12 pm »
Logically, this is the proper time to resume development at KSC. Look at the facts:

1. Originally, there were competing teams between KSC and Boca, but resource challenges and complications forced SpaceX to concentrate efforts and focus on one site.

2. SpaceX has a design for the tower, after iterating on the original design and has recently removed the previous structure from 39A.

3. KSC launches are planned to be part of the Artemis missions, so, it isn't realistic to wait very long to build out KSC

4. Lessons learned at Boca allow a fully built out stage 0 at KSC with no road blocks

5. SpaceX already has a FONSI for its EA at 39A, so a launch license from the FAA should be a normal procedural effort

Since SpaceX is planning two towers at Boca and looks to be doing the same here at KSC, it will be interesting to see what the conops are, a bunch of folks have already speculated on this subject a great deal.
If SpaceX intends to support HLS missions from KSC in 2024, they need to start building now. They will need facilities for launching, landing, and reburbishment in this time frame, with an initial launch to LEO in about a year.

Speculation: There is no compelling reason to do manufacturing in Florida in the short term. I think BC will have sufficient production capacity for HLS plus F9/FH mission replacement. KSC needs one or two SH. Artemis needs two HLS, one depot, maybe three tankers. F9 mission replacement needs maybe two cargo SS. That's two operational SH and eight operational SS, after the three or more test SH and three or more test SS. So, BC can build the six test vehicles in 2022 and the eight operational vehicles in 2023. For me, the biggest unknown is TPS refurbishment. SpaceX has always asserted that SS can be turned around in less than a day. We'll see.

Offline Jim

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #10 on: 02/26/2022 04:30 pm »

Speculation: There is no compelling reason to do manufacturing in Florida in the short term.

but they are

Online oldAtlas_Eguy

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #11 on: 02/26/2022 06:06 pm »
Ring manufacture occurs now still in a tent at BC. So ring manufacture could start soon if not already. It takes about 3 to 4 months to stack an SH or SS. After that another 1 to 2 months to add engines, tiles, and ancillary hardware. Meaning at least 6 months for a local manufactured vehicle for ability to start testing. But testing needs a launch mount and a tower. The tower is needed because of the QD on the SS regardless of using it to do stacking. So balancing vehicle build and the build of site assets to meet at some point in the future is something that SpaceX knows more about. But as I mentioned above that any launch from 39A would likely not happen before 7+ months from now or NET October 2022. With at least 1 high bay constructed to facilitate final few stacking actions could be done in time to still produce vehicles to then launch by end of year 2022.

Building local would be the soonest option for doing a launch at 39A vs trying to figure out a way to ship one of these very tall/large vehicles. The significant problems include is figuring out how to get these vehicles from the port at the cape to 39A or to build a port that would have clear access to 39A. To build such a port could take years for the permits and construction.

Online DanClemmensen

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #12 on: 02/26/2022 06:42 pm »
Ring manufacture occurs now still in a tent at BC. So ring manufacture could start soon if not already. It takes about 3 to 4 months to stack an SH or SS. After that another 1 to 2 months to add engines, tiles, and ancillary hardware. Meaning at least 6 months for a local manufactured vehicle for ability to start testing. But testing needs a launch mount and a tower. The tower is needed because of the QD on the SS regardless of using it to do stacking. So balancing vehicle build and the build of site assets to meet at some point in the future is something that SpaceX knows more about. But as I mentioned above that any launch from 39A would likely not happen before 7+ months from now or NET October 2022. With at least 1 high bay constructed to facilitate final few stacking actions could be done in time to still produce vehicles to then launch by end of year 2022.

Building local would be the soonest option for doing a launch at 39A vs trying to figure out a way to ship one of these very tall/large vehicles. The significant problems include is figuring out how to get these vehicles from the port at the cape to 39A or to build a port that would have clear access to 39A. To build such a port could take years for the permits and construction.
So why is SpaceX still expanding the manufacturing facility at BC? What do they intend to do with the SS and SH produced there, or do they intend to abandon the BC facility, or perhaps get permission to launch all BC product from BC? But if they can launch to LEO from BC, they can deliver SS to KSC from LEO.

We have an entire thread on ways to get SS and SH out of BC, and the barge proponents are adamant that it is easy. It is a great deal easier to get a barged SH or SS into KSC than it is to get it out of BC, although I'm not an expert and I'm skeptical of the barge approach. Pretty much all of the ways to get product out of BC have equivalent ways to get product into KSC and the KSC end is as easy or easier than the BC end.

If they need to launch BC-produced product from KSC and they cannot barge the BC-produced SS and SH into KSC and they cannot launch to LEO from BC, they will need to hop them in, I guess.

Is there any indication yet that they are building a capability to manufacture SS and SH in Florida? As far as I can see every facility so far is needed to build launch support stuff or support for refurbishment. I will wait to see either a Florida-built SH or SS, or SH or SS-specific pieces such as thrust pucks or nosecones, or a post from a SpaceX insider. The ability to build rings is needed to build GSE tanks, if they intend to build their own. I am not saying that they will not manufacture vehicles there or that such manufacturing will not start up soon. I am saying that I have not yet seen unequivocal evidence. I think they will certainly need more SS than they can produce in BC before they send the Mars fleet.

Offline DigitalMan

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #13 on: 02/26/2022 07:09 pm »
SpaceX has not yet produced one that they don't intend to expend or abandon on purpose.
« Last Edit: 02/26/2022 07:09 pm by DigitalMan »

Online DanClemmensen

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #14 on: 02/26/2022 07:56 pm »
SpaceX has not yet produced one that they don't intend to expend or abandon on purpose.
Does this mean that you think SpaceX intends to cease manufacture at BC?

Offline alugobi

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #15 on: 02/26/2022 08:07 pm »
I think we're seeing the segmenting of BC to the prototype station that Musk mentioned in the presentation.  And that big new building in FL looks like steel rolls in one end and SS parts out the other. 

Offline DigitalMan

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #16 on: 02/26/2022 08:10 pm »
SpaceX has not yet produced one that they don't intend to expend or abandon on purpose.
Does this mean that you think SpaceX intends to cease manufacture at BC?

It's pretty extreme to get that out of my comment. Just stating that even those who might think SpaceX would stop Starship development at BC need to realize it's currently not remotely likely. The opposite, its Starships all the way down.

Offline EL_DIABLO

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #17 on: 02/26/2022 08:20 pm »
So why is SpaceX still expanding the manufacturing facility at BC? What do they intend to do with the SS and SH produced there, or do they intend to abandon the BC facility, or perhaps get permission to launch all BC product from BC? But if they can launch to LEO from BC, they can deliver SS to KSC from LEO.

Sub orbital hops to an off shore platform in the Gulf along with a limited amount of orbital launches they can do from BC directly would be my guess.

Is there any indication yet that they are building a capability to manufacture SS and SH in Florida? As far as I can see every facility so far is needed to build launch support stuff or support for refurbishment. I will wait to see either a Florida-built SH or SS, or SH or SS-specific pieces such as thrust pucks or nosecones, or a post from a SpaceX insider. The ability to build rings is needed to build GSE tanks, if they intend to build their own. I am not saying that they will not manufacture vehicles there or that such manufacturing will not start up soon. I am saying that I have not yet seen unequivocal evidence. I think they will certainly need more SS than they can produce in BC before they send the Mars fleet.

Contruction plans at Roberts rd. seem quite unequivocal to me.
« Last Edit: 02/26/2022 08:21 pm by EL_DIABLO »

Offline jstrotha0975

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #18 on: 02/26/2022 09:16 pm »
Logically, this is the proper time to resume development at KSC. Look at the facts:

1. Originally, there were competing teams between KSC and Boca, but resource challenges and complications forced SpaceX to concentrate efforts and focus on one site.

2. SpaceX has a design for the tower, after iterating on the original design and has recently removed the previous structure from 39A.

3. KSC launches are planned to be part of the Artemis missions, so, it isn't realistic to wait very long to build out KSC

4. Lessons learned at Boca allow a fully built out stage 0 at KSC with no road blocks

5. SpaceX already has a FONSI for its EA at 39A, so a launch license from the FAA should be a normal procedural effort

Since SpaceX is planning two towers at Boca and looks to be doing the same here at KSC, it will be interesting to see what the conops are, a bunch of folks have already speculated on this subject a great deal.
If SpaceX intends to support HLS missions from KSC in 2024, they need to start building now. They will need facilities for launching, landing, and reburbishment in this time frame, with an initial launch to LEO in about a year.

Speculation: There is no compelling reason to do manufacturing in Florida in the short term. I think BC will have sufficient production capacity for HLS plus F9/FH mission replacement. KSC needs one or two SH. Artemis needs two HLS, one depot, maybe three tankers. F9 mission replacement needs maybe two cargo SS. That's two operational SH and eight operational SS, after the three or more test SH and three or more test SS. So, BC can build the six test vehicles in 2022 and the eight operational vehicles in 2023. For me, the biggest unknown is TPS refurbishment. SpaceX has always asserted that SS can be turned around in less than a day. We'll see.

Why does nobody factor in accidents? Murphy's law.

Online DanClemmensen

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Re: SpaceX Florida - Overall (Roberts Road to 39A and LC-49)
« Reply #19 on: 02/26/2022 10:13 pm »

Speculation: There is no compelling reason to do manufacturing in Florida in the short term. I think BC will have sufficient production capacity for HLS plus F9/FH mission replacement. KSC needs one or two SH. Artemis needs two HLS, one depot, maybe three tankers. F9 mission replacement needs maybe two cargo SS. That's two operational SH and eight operational SS, after the three or more test SH and three or more test SS. So, BC can build the six test vehicles in 2022 and the eight operational vehicles in 2023. For me, the biggest unknown is TPS refurbishment. SpaceX has always asserted that SS can be turned around in less than a day. We'll see.

Why does nobody factor in accidents? Murphy's law.

Feel free to make your own analysis of the short-term demand for SH and SS. I am not an expert and these numbers are speculative. Go ahead and add N units to the 5 SH and 9 SS I listed above. It will take awhile for Starship to achieve the reliability of F9, so Murphy will have relatively more opportunity in the near term (2023-2024) than later. Furthermore there are multiple SS variants, so the spares are not fungible. I only had one spare SH, one spare tanker, and one spare cargo SS. Let's add an additional spare SH and an additional spare for each SS variant. That's an additional HLS, tanker, depot, and cargo. Let's also add two SS for testing the crewed variant, so 10 extra added to the 14 I already listed: a total of 24 needed in 2 years of production. I'm still not seeing the immediate need for a second production facility.

Note that my original speculation replaced fifty F9 flights a year using ten F9 boosters with one cargo SS and one spare cargo SS. This requires reducing the F9 fifty-day turnaround to a seven-day cargo SS turnaround. However, in real life Starship will not replace all F9 missions by 2024, so there is a fair amount of slack here.

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