Author Topic: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8  (Read 26050 times)

Offline Chris Bergin

Third time's a charm.

Live update thread, as per last two attempts. Will move this up the forum a day in advance of launch.

All go for Feb 8 is the info tonight.

Online DaveS

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 9
« Reply #1 on: 02/06/2006 07:55 AM »
Launch now Feb 9 at 1:00 pm PST(3:00 pm EST, 2000 ZULU) according to the SpaceX website.
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Offline Hotol

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #2 on: 02/06/2006 11:52 AM »
Thursday night in front of the PC then!

Offline braddock

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 9
« Reply #3 on: 02/06/2006 03:09 PM »
Quote
DaveS - 6/2/2006  3:55 AM

Launch now Feb 9 at 1:00 pm PST(3:00 pm EST, 2000 ZULU) according to the SpaceX website.

That should be Feb 9 at 1:00pm PST = 4pm EST = 21:00 ZULU/UTC.  Shesh I hate time zones....

I'm trying to get a reason for the delay...maybe when California wakes up in the next hour...

Offline Launch Fan

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #4 on: 02/06/2006 07:08 PM »
Any news? Maybe they'll hold a phone conference to inform people, and if so, good luck! ;)

Offline braddock

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #5 on: 02/06/2006 11:29 PM »
Pushed back another day.  Launch date is now Friday, Feb 10th.

"As an additional reliability measure, SpaceX will conduct a full test of
vehicle systems, including initiating the flight countdown autosequence
and briefly firing the main engine on the launch stand. This test will
take place Thursday, February 9 (California time). If no flight critical
anomalies are detected, launch will take place on Friday, February 10."

This was also just posted on their web site as well.

Offline nacnud

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #6 on: 02/06/2006 11:33 PM »
Drat not Friday, I'll be in the pub, near a feild in the middle of the peak! Might have to get a GPRS phone...

Offline Chris Bergin

RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #7 on: 02/07/2006 07:18 AM »
Uggg, same reaction to Friday night here too :(

Offline Crispy

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #8 on: 02/07/2006 09:28 AM »
Everybody blow really hard, so high winds delay the launch till saturday. (around 11am please, so I can watch the launch over my eggs :))

Still - test firing on the pad - is that something other rockets do?

Offline braddock

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #9 on: 02/07/2006 01:06 PM »
Quote
Crispy - 7/2/2006  5:28 AM

Still - test firing on the pad - is that something other rockets do?

I'm curious about that too.  I wonder if it may be something made possible by the new hold-down arms they designed and installed since the last attempt.

Does anyone else know the issues involved in a rocket test firing on the pad?  Has that been done before?  I may want to work that into the eventual pre-launch article.

Online DaveS

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #10 on: 02/07/2006 01:27 PM »
Quote
Crispy - 7/2/2006  11:28 AM
Still - test firing on the pad - is that something other rockets do?
Yes. All orbiters have done it prior to their maiden flights. These test firings is usually known as Flight Readiness Firings or FRFs for short.

Columbia did one prior to STS-1, Challenger prior to STS-6, Discovery prior to STS-41D, Atlantis prior to STS-51J, Discovery again prior to Return To Flight STS-26R and Endeavour prior to STS-49.

Also, the Delta IV Evolved ELV performed an very short FRF prior to its first flight.

A Space Shuttle FRF is very similar to an real launch countdown, except for having the crew strapped into the orbiter and lighting the SRBs. The SSMEs is fired up for a brief time(around 20 seconds) and then safely shut down on the pad.
"For Sardines, space is no problem!"
-1996 Astronaut class slogan

"We're rolling in the wrong direction but for the right reasons"
-USA engineer about the rollback of Discovery prior to the STS-114 Return To Flight mission

Offline Jim

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #11 on: 02/07/2006 03:54 PM »
Quote
braddock - 7/2/2006  8:06 AM

Quote
Crispy - 7/2/2006  5:28 AM

Still - test firing on the pad - is that something other rockets do?

I'm curious about that too.  I wonder if it may be something made possible by the new hold-down arms they designed and installed since the last attempt.

Does anyone else know the issues involved in a rocket test firing on the pad?  Has that been done before?  I may want to work that into the eventual pre-launch article.

Atlas use to do that for every vehicle.  Now they only do a wet dress rehersal and they are looking to eliminate them too.

Offline braddock

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #12 on: 02/07/2006 09:16 PM »
SpaceX finally gave a time for their Friday launch window:  The launch window on Friday is 1- 7 p.m. (California time).  

Offline Jamie Young

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #13 on: 02/08/2006 03:30 AM »
Six hours of fun. At least that will be something to fill Friday afternoon!

Offline dmc6960

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #14 on: 02/08/2006 03:58 AM »
Does anyone have any pictures of the buckled first stage tank on their previous launch attempt?  Or is this something they as a private company are choosing not to advertise?  I find it odd that their "pictures" page on their website has not been updated in a very long time... no Marshall Islands photos up there.  The only ones they've posted from the launch site are a few that show up on their updates page, but then dissapear with the next update.  Spaceflightnow.com has some of the best pictures of the rocket on its pad, but I am really surprised I had to go there to get them, instead of SpaceX's website.

-Jim
-Jim

Offline braddock

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #15 on: 02/08/2006 10:35 AM »
Quote
dmc6960 - 7/2/2006  11:58 PM

Does anyone have any pictures of the buckled first stage tank on their previous launch attempt?  Or is this something they as a private company are choosing not to advertise?  I find it odd that their "pictures" page on their website has not been updated in a very long time... no Marshall Islands photos up there.  The only ones they've posted from the launch site are a few that show up on their updates page, but then dissapear with the next update.  Spaceflightnow.com has some of the best pictures of the rocket on its pad, but I am really surprised I had to go there to get them, instead of SpaceX's website.

-Jim

They haven't released any pictures of the damaged tank, AFAIK.  I can't said I blame them, it wouldn't exactly instill confidence.  I'll ask them for it after they get something into orbit... :)

I agree their web site is a mess.  I know that all the published photos I've seen came from the SpaceX web site, and most (but not all) are still available in the Elon Updates archive.  I've always had this suspicion that Elon personally hacked together that PHP-crazy web site, and when he gets busy the PR rep just barely knows how to post an update or release to it.  If you look at the source to some of the update pages, there seems to be some serious cut-and-pasting going on.

We ran the best two aerial photos of the Kwajalein islands at: http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/content/?id=4073
One of them has since disappeared from the archived updates on the SpaceX site.

Offline braddock

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #16 on: 02/08/2006 11:05 AM »
Okay, unofficial source time...

Looks like SpaceX had a power distribution board issue that was discovered on Saturday.  They had to obtain and test upgraded replacement capacitors from the US, and lower the rocket and do a stage separation to make the repair.  They just finished that yesterday, and should have the rocket vertical again by now.

That would presumably explain the delay.

Offline Crispy

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #17 on: 02/08/2006 12:45 PM »
Quote
braddock - 8/2/2006  12:05 PM

Okay, unofficial source time...

Looks like SpaceX had a power distribution board issue that was discovered on Saturday.

Wasn't it a power distribution issue that caused the last abort?
*goes to check*

Couldn't find it.

btw, Elon's brother has updated his blog - http://kwajrockets.blogspot.com/

Quote
When other rocket companies need something done, they requisition the right forms, talk to the right people, go back to the right forms, try again with another set of right people, go back to the forms, and eventually go a little more postal each day.

When SpaceX needs something done, they do it, and they do it fast.

Tells the story of how they basicly flew an intern from the spacex offices half way round the world and back to find the right capacitors to fix the rocket.

Hang on, that's the unofficial source isn't it :)

Offline braddock

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #18 on: 02/08/2006 01:46 PM »
Quote
Crispy - 8/2/2006  8:45 AM
Wasn't it a power distribution issue that caused the last abort?

Attempt 1: Engine computer reboot due to dirty shore power just before launch, although the ultimate reason for delay was running out of LOX.
Attempt 2: Shorted vent valve actuator or sensor caused valve controller board to reboot, nullifying the redundant sensors and valves, and causing the tank to crumple during pump-out.

Quote
Hang on, that's the unofficial source isn't it :)

I'll never tell... ;)

Offline Jim

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RE: LIVE UPDATES, SpaceX Falcon 1, Launch Feb 8
« Reply #19 on: 02/08/2006 05:44 PM »
Quote
Crispy - 8/2/2006  7:45 AM

btw, Elon's brother has updated his blog - http://kwajrockets.blogspot.com/

Quote
When other rocket companies need something done, they requisition the right forms, talk to the right people, go back to the right forms, try again with another set of right people, go back to the forms, and eventually go a little more postal each day.

When SpaceX needs something done, they do it, and they do it fast.

Tells the story of how they basicly flew an intern from the spacex offices half way round the world and back to find the right capacitors to fix the rocket.

Hang on, that's the unofficial source isn't it :)

I see that happen many times at the Cape, where people escort high priority hardware to and from the coasts at a moments notice, with even the hardware placed in a passenger seat.  Not really out of the ordinary.  The blog shows a picture of a engineer with the caption that he is in his 50th hour of  the day.  You can't sustain that for any long periods of time or over multiple launch campaigns.  Work hour rules are one of the reasons for larger launch teams.

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