Author Topic: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones  (Read 71485 times)

Offline Coastal Ron

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #140 on: 01/19/2018 05:41 pm »
80KSC018F0039
Effective Date 12/15/2017, Completion Date 04/16/2018  $10,134,469.00
...
In accordance with this task order statement of work, the Contractor shall perform an Inconel tank feasibility study and submit a cost proposal to implement follow-on Inconel development and initial cost information regarding full transition to Inconel tanks for crewed vehicles.  The feasibility report includes manufacturing R&D activities performed, results; and detailed information regarding the Spin-forming Process.

The task order also includes Solid Oxygen (SOx) test stand development and build; ground fluid system and supporting infrastructure development in order to collect information regarding the pressurized tanks used in the CTS.

OK, so NASA is willing to pay SpaceX to investigate an Inconel version of the current Falcon 9 Composite Overwrapped Pressure Vessel (COPV)?

Or, is this NASA directing SpaceX to investigate using an Inconel version of the COPV?

There are already different versions of the Falcon launcher first stage due to structural differences between the Falcon 9 and the Falcon Heavy core and boosters, and this could introduce additional versions that are different between human-rated Falcon 9's and non-human-rated Falcon 9's. That's a lot of variants to keep track of.

All the more reason to replace them with the BFR/BFS...  ;)
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Offline rcoppola

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #141 on: 01/19/2018 06:04 pm »
I suspect whichever material they build the Helium Tanks with, they'll make standard across their Block-5 F9 & FHcore fleet since they'd probably have to update the struts, etc.. as well. Since Block 5 is supposed to be their highly efficient design for re-use, they may be able to take the hit for the more expensive  design.
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Offline gongora

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #142 on: 01/19/2018 06:23 pm »
80KSC018F0039
Effective Date 12/15/2017, Completion Date 04/16/2018  $10,134,469.00
...
In accordance with this task order statement of work, the Contractor shall perform an Inconel tank feasibility study and submit a cost proposal to implement follow-on Inconel development and initial cost information regarding full transition to Inconel tanks for crewed vehicles.  The feasibility report includes manufacturing R&D activities performed, results; and detailed information regarding the Spin-forming Process.

The task order also includes Solid Oxygen (SOx) test stand development and build; ground fluid system and supporting infrastructure development in order to collect information regarding the pressurized tanks used in the CTS.

OK, so NASA is willing to pay SpaceX to investigate an Inconel version of the current Falcon 9 Composite Overwrapped Pressure Vessel (COPV)?

Or, is this NASA directing SpaceX to investigate using an Inconel version of the COPV?

I would guess NASA asked SpaceX to look at an alternative and SpaceX came up with Inconel.

(I'm not sure what thread is best for this tank stuff, it may get moved later.)
« Last Edit: 01/19/2018 06:35 pm by gongora »

Offline Johnnyhinbos

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #143 on: 01/19/2018 06:33 pm »
Would this be at all related to the construction work on the incomplete flame trench area over at McGregor?
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Online Roy_H

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #144 on: 01/19/2018 06:39 pm »
Would this be at all related to the construction work on the incomplete flame trench area over at McGregor?
I don't see a connection, I've assumed that flame trench is for Raptor testing.
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Offline JBF

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #145 on: 01/19/2018 08:07 pm »
Would this be at all related to the construction work on the incomplete flame trench area over at McGregor?
I don't see a connection, I've assumed that flame trench is for Raptor testing.

No it's going to be for 2nd stage testing.  Someone mentioned that it is being completed now because SpaceX is running into scheduling conflicts having the current stage 2 testing and Merlin testing in close proximity.
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Offline jpo234

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #146 on: 01/19/2018 08:44 pm »
Would this be at all related to the construction work on the incomplete flame trench area over at McGregor?
Hopefully they don't need a flame trench to test He bottles.
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Offline joek

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #147 on: 01/19/2018 08:57 pm »
OK, so NASA is willing to pay SpaceX to investigate an Inconel version of the current Falcon 9 Composite Overwrapped Pressure Vessel (COPV)?

Maybe.  I would not jump to the conclusion that this is related to the COPV's used for S1 and S2 as the language is ambiguous; might only apply to the tanks for Dragon and trunk.

Offline gongora

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #148 on: 01/19/2018 09:22 pm »
OK, so NASA is willing to pay SpaceX to investigate an Inconel version of the current Falcon 9 Composite Overwrapped Pressure Vessel (COPV)?

Maybe.  I would not jump to the conclusion that this is related to the COPV's used for S1 and S2 as the language is ambiguous; might only apply to the tanks for Dragon and trunk.

I agree the language in that contract document I found is ambiguous, but it does fit really well with the other information we've gotten recently about them studying a non-COPV design for helium tanks.

Offline Coastal Ron

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #149 on: 01/19/2018 10:27 pm »
OK, so NASA is willing to pay SpaceX to investigate an Inconel version of the current Falcon 9 Composite Overwrapped Pressure Vessel (COPV)?

Maybe.  I would not jump to the conclusion that this is related to the COPV's used for S1 and S2 as the language is ambiguous; might only apply to the tanks for Dragon and trunk.

Then why also pay to develop and build a Solid Oxygen (SOx) test stand? Sure sounds like it's for the COPV issue.
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 abaddon

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #150 on: 01/20/2018 01:24 am »
Itís clearly for the potential COPV replacement development.  Nice find.

That said, before anyone gets excited, this is s fallback if the COPV redesign effort fails, so itís not guaranteed to ever get used.

Offline Zucal

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #151 on: 01/20/2018 01:43 am »
80KSC018F0039
Effective Date 12/15/2017, Completion Date 04/16/2018  $10,134,469.00

...

In accordance with this task order statement of work, the Contractor shall perform an Inconel tank feasibility study and submit a cost proposal to implement follow-on Inconel development and initial cost information regarding full transition to Inconel tanks for crewed vehicles.  The feasibility report includes manufacturing R&D activities performed, results; and detailed information regarding the Spin-forming Process.

The task order also includes Solid Oxygen (SOx) test stand development and build; ground fluid system and supporting infrastructure development in order to collect information regarding the pressurized tanks used in the CTS.

Would like to cross-post this to r/SpaceX. Is there a direct link somewhere so I can avoid stressing the server?

Offline gongora

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #152 on: 01/20/2018 01:49 am »
80KSC018F0039
Effective Date 12/15/2017, Completion Date 04/16/2018  $10,134,469.00

...

In accordance with this task order statement of work, the Contractor shall perform an Inconel tank feasibility study and submit a cost proposal to implement follow-on Inconel development and initial cost information regarding full transition to Inconel tanks for crewed vehicles.  The feasibility report includes manufacturing R&D activities performed, results; and detailed information regarding the Spin-forming Process.

The task order also includes Solid Oxygen (SOx) test stand development and build; ground fluid system and supporting infrastructure development in order to collect information regarding the pressurized tanks used in the CTS.

Would like to cross-post this to r/SpaceX. Is there a direct link somewhere so I can avoid stressing the server?

I don't think you'd stress the server that much  :)

I found it on fpds.gov, which requires registration to look at it (and is kind of a pain in the rear to use, but it's free.)  You might be able to find it on one of the other government contract aggregation sites.

Offline joek

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #153 on: 01/20/2018 03:17 am »
Then why also pay to develop and build a Solid Oxygen (SOx) test stand? Sure sounds like it's for the COPV issue.

Not sure.  Because SOx is potentially a much higher risk with current COPV design if used in Dragon vs. S1 or S2?

In any case, NASA's own studies indicate AL COPV's are as good or better than Inconel COPV's at cryo temps.  (AL requires more over-wrap but in the end performs better with lower mass than Inconel).  Although NASA may be revisiting their conclusions given the potential presence of SOx, and thus why they are willing to pay SpaceX significant $ to investigate--which could as easily apply to S1, S2 and other applications.
« Last Edit: 01/20/2018 03:20 am by joek »

Offline gongora

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #154 on: 01/20/2018 03:42 am »
Then why also pay to develop and build a Solid Oxygen (SOx) test stand? Sure sounds like it's for the COPV issue.

Not sure.  Because SOx is potentially a much higher risk with current COPV design if used in Dragon vs. S1 or S2?

In any case, NASA's own studies indicate AL COPV's are as good or better than Inconel COPV's at cryo temps.  (AL requires more over-wrap but in the end performs better with lower mass than Inconel).  Although NASA may be revisiting their conclusions given the potential presence of SOx, and thus why they are willing to pay SpaceX significant $ to investigate--which could as easily apply to S1, S2 and other applications.

The SOx is only a problem on Falcon, not Dragon.  Dragon doesn't have any COPV submerged in LOx.  The alternative tanks would not be COPV.

edit: from the recently released ASAP annual report: "It also should be noted that NASA and SpaceX are working on an alternative helium tank design should the COPV certification efforts fail. However, the heavier weight of the alternative design could require significant modifications to the supporting structure to handle the additional loads."
« Last Edit: 01/20/2018 03:45 am by gongora »

Offline AncientU

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #155 on: 01/20/2018 12:10 pm »
Accepting the unintended consequences of installing a new, heavier design to replace one that has been pressurized and flown dozens of times since the procedure was changed is insanity.

Can't wait for the tell-all book that describes this whole process from the inside...
« Last Edit: 01/20/2018 12:12 pm by AncientU »
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Offline deruch

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #156 on: 01/20/2018 12:53 pm »
Accepting the unintended consequences of installing a new, heavier design to replace one that has been pressurized and flown dozens of times since the procedure was changed is insanity.

Can't wait for the tell-all book that describes this whole process from the inside...
Which one is it? 

SpaceX is great because they use agile development.  They're not afraid to make changes.  They don't get stuck being wedded to a method just because that's the way things have worked in the past. 

-OR- 

Changing things once they have built up a flight history is insane!  Once something works you shouldn't change it anymore.


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Offline kevinof

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #157 on: 01/20/2018 01:23 pm »
Well if Block 5 is the last in the line for the F9, why put in the effort of changing out the copv and all the testing it would require. 


Accepting the unintended consequences of installing a new, heavier design to replace one that has been pressurized and flown dozens of times since the procedure was changed is insanity.

Can't wait for the tell-all book that describes this whole process from the inside...
Which one is it? 

SpaceX is great because they use agile development.  They're not afraid to make changes.  They don't get stuck being wedded to a method just because that's the way things have worked in the past. 

-OR- 

Changing things once they have built up a flight history is insane!  Once something works you shouldn't change it anymore.

Offline AncientU

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #158 on: 01/20/2018 01:35 pm »
Accepting the unintended consequences of installing a new, heavier design to replace one that has been pressurized and flown dozens of times since the procedure was changed is insanity.

Can't wait for the tell-all book that describes this whole process from the inside...
Which one is it? 

SpaceX is great because they use agile development.  They're not afraid to make changes.  They don't get stuck being wedded to a method just because that's the way things have worked in the past. 

-OR- 

Changing things once they have built up a flight history is insane!  Once something works you shouldn't change it anymore.

It's not a dualism.

They have found that LiAl tankage work great... indefinite number of flights possible per EM.  Agile development doesn't apply here for Falcon any more.  But they are moving on to carbon composite skins for BFR... agile development for next quantum leap in technology.  Same with the M1-Ds -- at an endpoint in how far they can develop that technology which they advanced over the last ten years by agile development.  Now they are moving on to Raptors.   The entire Falcon line has been pushed to the point of diminishing returns (with FH), so they are fixing it at Block 5 and moving on.

This is much different than finding an entire set of technologies that comprise a great rocket -- like AtlasV, for instance, or the shuttle-derived tech -- and stopping development -- period.

For NASA to be demanding that they change COPVs, or M1-Ds, or sub-cooled propellant fueling just before launch with or without astros on board is bureaucratic excess (a.k.a. B.S.).  Why doesn't NASA change from use of solid boosters because they once killed a crew of seven?
« Last Edit: 01/20/2018 01:37 pm by AncientU »
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Offline deruch

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Re: SpaceX CCtCAP Milestones
« Reply #159 on: 01/20/2018 02:30 pm »
It's not a dualism.  They have found that LiAl tankage work great... indefinite number of flights possible per EM. 
No, I think it's confirmation bias.  When SpaceX makes changes to their system that drops flight heritage it's great vs NASA potentially forcing them to do the same for their missions is insane.  And I would make the same point to those who argue that SpaceX is reckless for making such changes but refuse to recognize NASA is potentially forcing it here.  Specifically to the issue of swapping COPVs, we don't know what sort of testing results SpaceX/NASA have been seeing.  Are failures predictable and ongoing performance well characterized with their current tanks/procedures?  Sure, they have been successful so far but is that success reliable?  Without knowing what they have been finding, it's hard to criticize NASA (who does know) for pushing for a change if they feel it is warranted.  To my mind, any gain from the switch would have to be pretty significant before I felt giving up the flight heritage was worth it.  Of course, SpaceX clearly feels differently and they certainly have seen the same results. 

Quote
Why doesn't NASA change from use of solid boosters because they once killed a crew of seven?

They did.  The design of the SRB joints was altered to eliminate the cause of the Challenger disaster. 
« Last Edit: 01/20/2018 02:31 pm by deruch »
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