Author Topic: SpaceX Dragon Specs  (Read 54124 times)

Offline dustyw

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SpaceX Dragon Specs
« on: 10/21/2008 08:02 am »
I found this PDF file on the SpaceX website.
http://www.spacex.com/SpaceX_Brochure_V7_All.pdf


Dragon is a free-flying, reusable spacecraft being developed by SpaceX under
NASA's Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) program. Subsystems
include propulsion, power, thermal control, environmental control, avionics, communications,
thermal protection, flight software, guidance, navigation & control, entry
descent & landing, and recovery.
Though designed to address cargo and crew requirements for the International
Space Station (ISS), as a free-flying spacecraft Dragon also provides an excellent
platform for in-space technology demonstrations and scientific instrument testing.
SpaceX is currently manifesting fully commercial, non-ISS Dragon flights under the
name "DragonLab". DragonLab represents an emergent capability for in-space
experimentation.

Dragon Spacecraft System
Fully recoverable capsule
Trunk jettisoned prior to reentry
6,000 kg (13,228 lbs) total combined
up-mass capability
Up to 3,000 kg (6,614 lbs) down mass
Payload Volume:
7 to 10 m3 (245 ft3) pressurized
14 m3 (490 ft3) unpressurized
Mission Duration: 1 week to 2 years
Payload Integration timeline:
Nominal: Launch -14 days
Late-load: Launch -9 hours
Payload Return:
Nominal: End-of-Mission +7 days
Early Access: End-of-Mission +24 hours

Uses
Highly Responsive payload hosting
Sensors/apertures up to 3.5 m (138 in) dia.
Instruments and sensor testing
Spacecraft deployment
Space physics and relativity experimen
Radiation effects research
Microgravity research
Life science and biotech studies
Earth sciences and observations
Materials & space environments research

Overall Length: 6.1 m (20 ft)
Max Diameter: 3.7 m (12.1 ft)
Dry Mass: 4,200 kg (9,260 lbs)

« Last Edit: 10/21/2008 10:29 am by dustyw »

Offline stockman

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #1 on: 11/04/2008 12:12 am »
Starting to advertise DragonLab a bit too. See below - Apparently they are sponsoring a workshop on this on November 6th.

......

http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/SpaceX-Introduces-DragonLabTM-a-Free/story.aspx?guid=%7B7F6B08F7-BDAD-4A46-BAE0-A61DE577BDDF%7D

......

SpaceX Introduces DragonLab(TM) -- a Free-Flying, Reusable Spacecraft Offering Fast Track to Orbital Flight for Pressurized and Unpressurized Payloads
SpaceX to Host (Invitation-only) Users Workshop on November 6

Last update: 2:27 p.m. EST Nov. 3, 2008

HAWTHORNE, Calif., Nov 03, 2008 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX) is introducing a new commercial product called DragonLab(TM), a free-flying, reusable spacecraft capable of hosting pressurized and unpressurized payloads to and from space. DragonLab will launch to orbit aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 launch vehicle.
DragonLab provides a platform for in-space experimentation, including recovery of pressurized and some unpressurized payloads, as well as deployment of small spacecraft. As a complete system, DragonLab provides for all aspects of operation: propulsion, power, thermal control, environmental control, avionics, communications, thermal protection, flight software, guidance, navigation and control, entry, descent and landing and recovery.
SpaceX will host a DragonLab Users Workshop on November 6, 2008. This workshop will be an opportunity for potential customers to fully explore DragonLab's capabilities, as well as present customer-specific interests and requirements. The workshop agenda includes an overview of the Dragon spacecraft, concept of operations, payload accommodations and cost parameters.
"Just as importantly," said Max Vozoff, Product Manager for Dragon and DragonLab and host of the Users Workshop, "we will hear from potential users about their applications, requirements, and concerns, as well as discuss contracting mechanisms. We will also include a tour of our 550,000 square foot SpaceX manufacturing facility where we design and build all major systems for SpaceX launch vehicles and spacecraft."
SpaceX is currently manufacturing the Dragon spacecraft and Falcon 9 launch vehicle to provide the U.S. with cargo services to the International Space Station (ISS) under NASA's Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) competition. The maiden flight of Dragon/Falcon9 is currently scheduled for June 2009 from SpaceX's Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral, Florida. Two subsequent flights will be completed by 2010, culminating with Dragon berthing with the ISS.
Contact [email protected] to request further information or an invitation to attend. All participants must register in advance to attend this workshop.
About SpaceX
SpaceX is developing a family of launch vehicles and spacecraft intended to increase the reliability and reduce the cost of both manned and unmanned space transportation, ultimately by a factor of ten. With its Falcon line of launch vehicles, Falcon 1, Falcon 9 and Falcon 9 Heavy - powered by internally-developed Merlin engines - SpaceX offers light, medium and heavy lift capabilities to deliver spacecraft into any inclination and altitude, from low Earth orbit to geosynchronous orbit to planetary missions.
On September 28, 2008, Falcon 1, designed and manufactured from the ground up by SpaceX, became the first privately-developed liquid fuel rocket to orbit the Earth.
As a winner of NASA's Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) competition, SpaceX is in a position to help fill the gap in U.S. spaceflight to the International Space Station (ISS) when the U.S. Space Shuttle retires in 2010. Under the existing Agreement, SpaceX will conduct three flights of its Falcon 9 launch vehicle and Dragon spacecraft for NASA, culminating in Dragon berthing with the ISS. SpaceX is the only COTS contender with the capability to return cargo to Earth and demonstrate the capability to carry crew to and from the ISS.
Founded in 2002, the SpaceX team now numbers more than 550, located primarily at headquarters in Hawthorne, California, with additional SpaceX locations at the company's Test Facility in McGregor, Texas; offices in Washington DC; and launch facilities at Cape Canaveral, Florida; Vandenberg AFB, California; and Omelek Island in the Marshall Islands in the Central Pacific.

SOURCE: SpaceX

SpaceX

Diane Murphy / VP, Marketing and Communications
[email protected]
310-363-6714

One Percent for Space!!!

Offline stockman

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #2 on: 11/04/2008 03:23 pm »
DragonLab news now on SpaceX web site - Nov 3

http://www.spacex.com/press.php?page=20081103

« Last Edit: 11/04/2008 03:25 pm by stockman »
One Percent for Space!!!

Online Comga

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #3 on: 11/11/2008 05:46 am »
There is a really high resolution version of this image on the new DragonLab brochure .  Of course, more details just leads to more questions, trying to tease information out of it:

1) "Image Credit: NASA"?  for DragonLab?

2) The RMS grapple fixture has been replaced by what looks like a sample exposure panel.  Can that door really achieve a watertight seal for the ocean splashdown?

3) The sensor hatch opening mechanism remains in the opening.  Kind of clumsy.

4) From where do the parachutes (redundant drogue and main) and floats come?

5) They let the STK guy / graphic artist off leash.  The line to the sun runs through the solar panel rotation axis, the one orientation where DragonLab can't generate power.

6) You can see a trunk-to-capsule umbilical right below the sensor hatch.

7) There is an one more RCS nozzle in the upper cluster than there is in the bottom cluster.  In fact, both look notional, like the internal parts would overlap and interfere. "12-18 Draco thrusters"? It's variable?

8) If that's not a docking mechanism, what is the ring out front with the eight petals?  Residual structure from COTS Dragon?

9) The artist went to some trouble to texture the front surface.  It looks like putty with circular trowel marks.  What is it supposed to represent?

10) The outer mold line of Dragon has remained constant for years, as opposed to, say,.... Orion.  Is that because they haven't done much work on Dragon, can't afford another iteration, assume they have a finite budget, are taking a fixed format and variable capability approach, or all of the above?

11) Sea level pressure +/-0.5 PSI.  That's a lot of air and pressure.

12) With a Falcon 9 capability to a 200 km LEO orbit of 12,500 kg, and a stated up-mass capacity of 6,000 kg, the Dragon and Trunk must be only 6,500 kg.

13) It is sincerely to be hoped that they will have tighter thermal control for manned flight than 10-46 deg C

14) 150 Mpbs downlink is serious bandwidth, even for onboard storage.

15) What is a GPS/Iridium locator beacon?  Are ELS beacon receivers hosted on GPS or Iridium?  Are their beacons transmitting GPS derived location?
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline Antares

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #4 on: 11/11/2008 06:42 am »
I'll take a couple of stabs:

1)  IIUC, the COTS office has had some of the JSC graphics contractors work up some images and movies for both partners.  So image credit to NASA makes sense at least for ownership; production would be the contractor.

8 ) I'm 99% sure that's a passive CBM, which would be needed to go to the ISS.

10) Orion has been doing things to drop its weight to accommodate its launch vehicle.  Dragon was matched to an F9 that carrie(d/s) sufficient performance margin that mass and aero scrubbing aren't necessary.

15) I thought ELTs communicated with NOAA sats, both POES and GOES, including uplinking GPS coordinates.
« Last Edit: 11/11/2008 06:43 am by Antares »
If I like something on NSF, it's probably because I know it to be accurate.  Every once in a while, it's just something I agree with.  Facts generally receive the former.

Offline renclod

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #5 on: 11/11/2008 08:03 am »

8 ) I'm 99% sure that's a passive CBM, which would be needed to go to the ISS.


This DragonLab is a non-ISS concept. Free flyer, but no go for ISS. No need for a berthing ring.


Offline Skyrocket

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #6 on: 11/11/2008 09:21 am »
Most likely the illustratrion shows a Dragon, not a DragonLab. The Logo on the trunk shows also the writing "Dragon"

Offline Antares

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #7 on: 11/12/2008 04:33 am »
8 ) I'm 99% sure that's a passive CBM, which would be needed to go to the ISS.
This DragonLab is a non-ISS concept. Free flyer, but no go for ISS. No need for a berthing ring.

Since my credibility is paramount to me: I did not mean to imply DragonLab is anything other than a free-flyer.  But I'm still 99% sure that's a PCBM ;) even if ISS is not on the itinerary.
If I like something on NSF, it's probably because I know it to be accurate.  Every once in a while, it's just something I agree with.  Facts generally receive the former.

Offline Jorge

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #8 on: 11/12/2008 04:59 am »
8 ) I'm 99% sure that's a passive CBM, which would be needed to go to the ISS.
This DragonLab is a non-ISS concept. Free flyer, but no go for ISS. No need for a berthing ring.

Since my credibility is paramount to me: I did not mean to imply DragonLab is anything other than a free-flyer.  But I'm still 99% sure that's a PCBM ;) even if ISS is not on the itinerary.

You can make that 100%. That's a PCBM in the graphic, all right. (The open question is whether that graphic is an accurate representation of DragonLab, or just a Dragon.)
JRF

Offline renclod

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #9 on: 11/12/2008 02:54 pm »
Ah, OK. I remember that the CBM is structurally integral to the Dragon. So, they wouldn't mess with the structure just to launch a Dragon as DragonLab. It just a capsule space lab with a berthing ring that is berthed to nothing. No big deal.


Offline Antares

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #10 on: 11/12/2008 05:12 pm »
I bet they get rid of it on the final DragonLab design.  The PCBM is a costly and heavy piece of hardware if it's not going to be used.  It hurts CG for hypersonic stability too.
If I like something on NSF, it's probably because I know it to be accurate.  Every once in a while, it's just something I agree with.  Facts generally receive the former.

Offline Namechange User

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #11 on: 11/12/2008 05:19 pm »
I bet they get rid of it on the final DragonLab design.  The PCBM is a costly and heavy piece of hardware if it's not going to be used.  It hurts CG for hypersonic stability too.

Unless you are trying to change the configuration as little as possible to maintain as much commonality as possible between ISS Dragon and Dragon Lab. 

If you can keep the CBM for the lab and use current structure, anlaysis models, etc this would be an ideal situation to keep costs as low as possible.  I'm sure that was a tradeoff evaluated with costs and commonality in mind. 
Enjoying viewing the forum a little better now by filtering certain users.

Offline nomadd22

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #12 on: 11/12/2008 05:33 pm »

13) It is sincerely to be hoped that they will have tighter thermal control for manned flight than 10-46 deg C

 I think that's obviously the range they can operate in. As in, all systems have to certified to stay in spec throughout that range.

15) What is a GPS/Iridium locator beacon?  Are ELS beacon receivers hosted on GPS or Iridium?  Are their beacons transmitting GPS derived location?
There are GPS beacons that use the 2400 bps data channel available on Iridium. Cheaper and smaller than the old EPIRBs.
« Last Edit: 11/12/2008 05:34 pm by nomadd22 »

Offline William Barton

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #13 on: 11/12/2008 05:52 pm »
I bet they get rid of it on the final DragonLab design.  The PCBM is a costly and heavy piece of hardware if it's not going to be used.  It hurts CG for hypersonic stability too.

Unless you are trying to change the configuration as little as possible to maintain as much commonality as possible between ISS Dragon and Dragon Lab. 

If you can keep the CBM for the lab and use current structure, anlaysis models, etc this would be an ideal situation to keep costs as low as possible.  I'm sure that was a tradeoff evaluated with costs and commonality in mind. 

Is it at least notional that Dragon will be reusable (at least to the extent the principle structure will be)? If Dragon ever wants to be sold as a lifeboat for ISS, it'll need the capability to survive aloft for a long time anyway. DragonLab sounds like, "What else can we sell this for?"

Offline Lampyridae

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #14 on: 11/13/2008 05:20 am »
Mr. Barton has some interesting points. However, Mr. Musk's ideas have been in areas where he thinks there is a great opportunity. This is a service which no-one else offers, apart from cubesats which are kind of limited. I could see this targetted at universities and small companies, even the odd government agency.

This idea probably came up very early on, and it's only now that they are gearing up to actually putting stuff in orbit that SpaceX is punting this.

The cynical side of me thinks that SpaceX is only doing this to seem more interesting to investors.

*EDIT: Still, if I was a university I would love to put an experiment in there if it only cost $100 000. The Mars Biogravity Sat springs to mind.

Just had a thought... containerisation was one of the inventions (obvious thought it be) that led to globalisation. NASA tried something like this with GASCANs and failed (or rather gave up).
« Last Edit: 11/13/2008 05:25 am by Lampyridae »
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Online Comga

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #15 on: 11/13/2008 05:30 am »
I'll take a couple of stabs:

1)  IIUC, the COTS office has had some of the JSC graphics contractors work up some images and movies for both partners.  So image credit to NASA makes sense at least for ownership; production would be the contractor.

8 ) I'm 99% sure that's a passive CBM, which would be needed to go to the ISS.

10) Orion has been doing things to drop its weight to accommodate its launch vehicle.  Dragon was matched to an F9 that carrie(d/s) sufficient performance margin that mass and aero scrubbing aren't necessary.

15) I thought ELTs communicated with NOAA sats, both POES and GOES, including uplinking GPS coordinates.

Thanks

1) I did not know that.
8 ) So it is generally agreed that this is residual from the CBM on Dragon, either structurally or graphically, and that it may or may not be part of DragonLab?
15) Nomadd22 had a plausible answer for this one

10) So Constellation had insufficient margins going in, and is dropping elements and augmenting the booster, while SpaceX allocated sufficient margins when they were a four year old organization?
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline Lampyridae

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #16 on: 11/13/2008 05:58 am »
10) I would say that their Dragon module was most probably a very conservative design. Apparently SpaceX examined a whole lot, and then went with Dragon. I don't think they've gotten that far with Dragon to date; all the main work is on F1 and F9. To scrub weight, they would just remove payload. I personally think that a 7-seater Dragon is over-optimistic and that most likely only 5 or even 4 will be possible on an F9. Just my 2 cents, though.
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Online kkattula

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #17 on: 11/13/2008 07:07 am »
10) I would say that their Dragon module was most probably a very conservative design. Apparently SpaceX examined a whole lot, and then went with Dragon. I don't think they've gotten that far with Dragon to date; all the main work is on F1 and F9. To scrub weight, they would just remove payload. I personally think that a 7-seater Dragon is over-optimistic and that most likely only 5 or even 4 will be possible on an F9. Just my 2 cents, though.

Given they don't need life support for very long, each extra person is probably less than 200 kg including seat, suit, luggage, etc. So weight probably doesn't factor in for crewed missions, just how many they can comfortably squeeze in.

Offline CentEur

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #18 on: 11/13/2008 10:03 am »
Mr. Barton has some interesting points. However, Mr. Musk's ideas have been in areas where he thinks there is a great opportunity. This is a service which no-one else offers, apart from cubesats which are kind of limited.

Actually SpaceX is copying a Russian idea. See http://www.astronautix.com/craft/foton.htm

I wonder if ESA switches from Foton to DragonLab. The rumours are that cooperation with Russians on Foton missions is a real pain.

Offline A_M_Swallow

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Re: SpaceX Dragon Specs
« Reply #19 on: 11/14/2008 12:07 am »

8 ) I'm 99% sure that's a passive CBM, which would be needed to go to the ISS.


This DragonLab is a non-ISS concept. Free flyer, but no go for ISS. No need for a berthing ring.


A berthing ring on the DragonLab would allow a manned Dragon to dock with the DragonLab.  This would permit say heavy and/or large scientific equipment to be lifted in the DLab and the operators launched a month later in the Dragon.

Two launches may be cheaper that fully automating the equipment, particularly if the extra hardware has to be space certified.  The DragonLab comes with a down mass facility which is rare on satellites, permitting return od equipment and samples.

To perform docking the DragonLab (or Dragon) would have to be equipped with an Active Common Berthing Mechanism and its front (top) hatch fitted with handles that permit it to be opened & closed from the Dragon's hatch.

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