Author Topic: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)  (Read 51395 times)

Good news!
The location for the LA port BFR manufacturing facility has been officially confirmed (and approved).
From Reddit:
Quote
On Thursday evening, the Port of San Pedro 'Board of Harbor Commissioners' approved, without discussion, 'Environmental Management- ADOPTION OF THE FINAL INITIAL STUDY/MITIGATED NEGATIVE DECLARATION AND APPROVAL OF THE BERTH 240 TRANSPORTATION VESSELS MANUFACTURING FACILITY PROJECT'.

Here's an excerpt from the approved document (courtesy of Reddit user Zucal):
Quote
The proposed Project involves the issuance of a 10-year Lease (with up to two 10-year lease extension/renewal options) for the construction and operation of a facility to manufacture large commercial transportation vessels at Berth 240 off Seaside Avenue on Terminal Island. The approximately 18-acre proposed Project site includes portions of the former Southwest Marine site. The site is entirely disturbed with abandoned industrial buildings, unused compacted dirt area, and paved areas. Operation would involve research and development of transportation vessels and would likely include general manufacturing procedures such as welding, composite curing, cleaning, painting, and assembly operations. The majority of operations would take place inside the facility, with exterior operations limited to transit of vehicles, forklift traffic, and mobilization of manufactured products onto a barge at the dockside for testing and delivery. Finished vessels would need to be transported via water due to their size; thus there is the need to locate the facility immediately adjacent to the water. In addition, the lease would accommodate recovery operations undertaken by Space Exploration Technologies to bring to shore vehicles returning from space that are retrieved by an autonomous drone ship offshore.

It's interesting that the applicant appears to be WW Marine Composites, LLC , and BFR stages are referred to as 'commercial transportation vessels'.
« Last Edit: 05/07/2018 02:40 pm by gongora »
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Offline Navier–Stokes

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #1 on: 03/19/2018 03:00 pm »
Draft proposal from December 2017 found by u/abledanger.

Edit: Here is the final version.
« Last Edit: 03/19/2018 03:04 pm by Navier–Stokes »

Offline jpo234

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #2 on: 03/19/2018 03:03 pm »
Good news!
The location for the LA port BFR manufacturing facility has been officially confirmed (and approved).
From Reddit:
Quote
On Thursday evening, the Port of San Pedro 'Board of Harbor Commissioners' approved, without discussion, 'Environmental Management- ADOPTION OF THE FINAL INITIAL STUDY/MITIGATED NEGATIVE DECLARATION AND APPROVAL OF THE BERTH 240 TRANSPORTATION VESSELS MANUFACTURING FACILITY PROJECT'.

Here's an excerpt from the approved document (courtesy of Reddit user Zucal):
Quote
The proposed Project involves the issuance of a 10-year Lease (with up to two 10-year lease extension/renewal options) for the construction and operation of a facility to manufacture large commercial transportation vessels at Berth 240 off Seaside Avenue on Terminal Island. The approximately 18-acre proposed Project site includes portions of the former Southwest Marine site. The site is entirely disturbed with abandoned industrial buildings, unused compacted dirt area, and paved areas. Operation would involve research and development of transportation vessels and would likely include general manufacturing procedures such as welding, composite curing, cleaning, painting, and assembly operations. The majority of operations would take place inside the facility, with exterior operations limited to transit of vehicles, forklift traffic, and mobilization of manufactured products onto a barge at the dockside for testing and delivery. Finished vessels would need to be transported via water due to their size; thus there is the need to locate the facility immediately adjacent to the water. In addition, the lease would accommodate recovery operations undertaken by Space Exploration Technologies to bring to shore vehicles returning from space that are retrieved by an autonomous drone ship offshore.

It's interesting that the applicant appears to be WW Marine Composites, LLC , and BFR stages are referred to as 'commercial transportation vessels'.

Original proposal.
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 Navier–Stokes

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #3 on: 03/19/2018 03:08 pm »
It's interesting that the applicant appears to be WW Marine Composites, LLC , and BFR stages are referred to as 'commercial transportation vessels'.

A quick search of WW Marine Composites turns up only the aforementioned documents and the LinkedIn page of a former project manager for the Port of Los Angeles (https://www.linkedin.com/in/franksanchez1974) where the company is described as developing "advanced rockets and spacecraft."
« Last Edit: 03/19/2018 03:10 pm by Navier–Stokes »

Offline zack

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #4 on: 03/19/2018 03:13 pm »
Looks like there is also a facility in Seattle involved (from the pdf):

Quote
Most materials necessary for manufacturing would be delivered via truck and approximately 10 truck trips per day would be expected with deliveries. For oversized components, deliveries would be via barge delivering directly to the new facility from Seattle. It is anticipated that there would be an average of one delivery by barge per month, with peak periods of a vessels manufacturing necessitating up to three deliveries by barge.

I am guessing these deliveries would be large composite tanks from Janicki Industries.

Offline Dave G

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« Last Edit: 03/19/2018 03:27 pm by Dave G »

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Offline RedLineTrain

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #7 on: 03/19/2018 03:35 pm »
A relatively modestly-sized factory:  ~200,000 square feet.

32 meter height.  Construction would last 16-18 months.

A smaller 65,000 square foot building (also 32 meter height) would be built earlier.  I guess that's where the early BFS will be built.
« Last Edit: 03/19/2018 03:45 pm by RedLineTrain »

Offline Lars-J

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #8 on: 03/19/2018 03:50 pm »
A relatively modestly-sized factory:  ~200,000 square feet.

32 meter height.  Construction would last 16-18 months.

A smaller 65,000 square foot building (also 32 meter height) would be built earlier.  I guess that's where the early BFS will be built.

Here is a 3D view of the current (?) look of the property:

EDIT: Added street view.
« Last Edit: 03/19/2018 03:56 pm by Lars-J »

Offline JBF

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #9 on: 03/19/2018 03:51 pm »
Quote
In addition, the lease would accommodate recovery operations undertaken by Space Exploration
Technologies to bring to shore vehicles returning from space that are retrieved by an autonomous drone ship
offshore. Retrieved vehicles would then be transported via ground transportation to the company’s facility in
Hawthorne for reuse. The supply barge used for these recovery operations would be stored along the berth
associated with the proposed Project lease area. These activities are ongoing with the Port and would be
relocated to the proposed Project site to reduce shipping constraints at the current location. The recovery
operations would be accommodated at the southern end of the existing wharf. Recovery activities would not
occur on the same day(s) as export activities associated with the proposed Project.
  This pretty much conclusively identifies it as a SpaceX site.
"In principle, rocket engines are simple, but that’s the last place rocket engines are ever simple." Jeff Bezos

A relatively modestly-sized factory:  ~200,000 square feet.

32 meter height.  Construction would last 16-18 months.

A smaller 65,000 square foot building (also 32 meter height) would be built earlier.  I guess that's where the early BFS will be built.
I'd guess this is mainly for final assembly (as already said the document mentions large shipments from Seattle: most likely fuel tanks from Janicki), very few ships processed at a time.

I take this as a confirmation that BFR tanks prototyping with Janicki didn't end with the 12m one, and they intend to build a partnership, at least for the initial version of the vehicle.

Some renders of the facility (with F9 recovered stage photobombing):
« Last Edit: 03/19/2018 03:58 pm by AbuSimbel »
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Offline Navier–Stokes

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #11 on: 03/19/2018 04:00 pm »
For purposes of estimating project emissions, and based on information provided by the project applicant, it is assumed that construction of the project would commence in 20184 and would last approximately 12-18 months, ending in 2019. The project would take an additional 4-6 months after construction to install equipment. [...]

4 The analysis assumes a construction start date of April 2018, which represents the earliest date construction would initiate. [...]

Offline jpo234

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #12 on: 03/19/2018 04:04 pm »
Anybody close to the site who can put a webcam on a pole?
« Last Edit: 03/19/2018 04:05 pm by jpo234 »
You want to be inspired by things. You want to wake up in the morning and think the future is going to be great. That's what being a spacefaring civilization is all about. It's about believing in the future and believing the future will be better than the past. And I can't think of anything more exciting than being out there among the stars.

Online Jdeshetler

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #13 on: 03/19/2018 04:34 pm »
For a sense of scale, SpaceX Hawthorne factory (300,000 square feet) was imposed on this LA port plot.

Offline RedLineTrain

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #14 on: 03/19/2018 04:53 pm »
We should have spotted this in September last year.  Bruce McHugh was listed as the real property negotiator for WW Marine Composites in a board agenda.  He is the Director of Construction and Real Estate at SpaceX.

Our sleuthing skills need a bit of work. ;)
« Last Edit: 03/19/2018 04:54 pm by RedLineTrain »

Offline gongora

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #15 on: 03/19/2018 05:12 pm »
A relatively modestly-sized factory:  ~200,000 square feet.

32 meter height.  Construction would last 16-18 months.

A smaller 65,000 square foot building (also 32 meter height) would be built earlier.  I guess that's where the early BFS will be built.

The ~200k sq ft building includes the initial 65k sq ft building (basically a 140k sq ft addition to the first building).

Looks like they have to leave most of the buildings on the South end of the site because it's a historic district.

Offline wannamoonbase

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #16 on: 03/19/2018 05:54 pm »
Well this is exciting news isn't it?

Since they are moving assembly outside of the Hawthorne facility I think it makes sense to revisit the diameter. 

Go for the wider and shorter vehicle for thermal efficiency on the tanks.

Maybe EM is just leaving room for BFR2 down the road.

Edit: it will be interesting to see if this site gets more construction attention than the BC launch site.

« Last Edit: 03/19/2018 05:54 pm by wannamoonbase »
Needing a copy of 'Tales of Suspense #39'

Offline Navier–Stokes

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #17 on: 03/19/2018 06:21 pm »
Ars Technica article:
Quote
[A]n independent source confirmed that this facility is, indeed, intended for the manufacture of the BFR rocket in Los Angeles.

Offline AncientU

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #18 on: 03/19/2018 06:25 pm »
Well this is exciting news isn't it?

Since they are moving assembly outside of the Hawthorne facility I think it makes sense to revisit the diameter. 

Go for the wider and shorter vehicle for thermal efficiency on the tanks.

Maybe EM is just leaving room for BFR2 down the road.

Edit: it will be interesting to see if this site gets more construction attention than the BC launch site.

BC is to be ready for test flights by early 2019... BFS (prototype?) is being built now in Hawthorne.
16-18 month construction places these facilities at completion summer of next year.
I suspect that these facilities are for full production of BFR and BFS; the near the launch site idea must have been over-ridden by the location of the most qualified work force and qualified employment resource pool.
Significant additions to the SpaceX navy will be forthcoming.
« Last Edit: 03/19/2018 06:31 pm by AncientU »
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Offline M.E.T.

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Re: BFR Manufacturing Facility in San Pedro (Los Angeles)
« Reply #19 on: 03/19/2018 06:42 pm »
Well this is exciting news isn't it?

Since they are moving assembly outside of the Hawthorne facility I think it makes sense to revisit the diameter. 

Go for the wider and shorter vehicle for thermal efficiency on the tanks.

Maybe EM is just leaving room for BFR2 down the road.

Edit: it will be interesting to see if this site gets more construction attention than the BC launch site.

BC is to be ready for test flights by early 2019... BFS (prototype?) is being built now in Hawthorne.
16-18 month construction places these facilities at completion summer of next year.
I suspect that these facilities are for full production of BFR and BFS; the near the launch site idea must have been over-ridden by the location of the most qualified work force and qualified employment resource pool.
Significant additions to the SpaceX navy will be forthcoming.

Is there some reason why engineering talent would not want to live in Florida? Surely the need for the whole Panama canal trip adds a lot of extra cost and complexity to the entire process. Why not just keep your construction on the east coast, close to your various launch pads? Isn't that what Blue Origin is going to do with their New Glenn factory?

What makes California so much more appealing that a sea voyage around an entire continent is still not too high a price to pay for having your factory there?

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