Author Topic: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)  (Read 372659 times)

Online meekGee

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #620 on: 03/09/2017 02:51 pm »

It'll be a world with daily launches, manned and unmanned.


Not in this or the next decade.
This decade is almost over....

My prediction:

By 2025:

First ITS flew (cis-lunar), multiple are being built.

Constellations are airborne, and their launch rates are approaching 1/day.
« Last Edit: 03/09/2017 02:53 pm by meekGee »
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Offline M.E.T.

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #621 on: 03/09/2017 02:56 pm »

It'll be a world with daily launches, manned and unmanned.


Not in this or the next decade.
This decade is almost over....

My prediction:

By 2025:

First ITS flew, multiple are being built.

Constellations are airborne, launch rates approaching 1/day.

Well, if you include all launches, manned and unmanned, then let's see:

SpaceX is targeting 20+ launches this year already. Probably around 50 launches per year by 2019, when they have 4 launch sites in operation. So that's already a launch a week, just from SpaceX, before this decade is out.

Add all other operators, and you are probably up to 2 launches a week, on average. A launch every third day, in other words. I guess you're correct that this could quite conceivably triple in cadence by the end of the 2020's, to a launch a day.
« Last Edit: 03/09/2017 02:57 pm by M.E.T. »

Offline whitelancer64

Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #622 on: 03/09/2017 02:59 pm »
What is being launched once per day??
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Offline M.E.T.

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #623 on: 03/09/2017 03:05 pm »
What is being launched once per day??

Yes, the market obviously needs to exist to support that launch rate.
« Last Edit: 03/09/2017 03:06 pm by M.E.T. »

Online meekGee

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #624 on: 03/09/2017 03:06 pm »

It'll be a world with daily launches, manned and unmanned.


Not in this or the next decade.
This decade is almost over....

My prediction:

By 2025:

First ITS flew, multiple are being built.

Constellations are airborne, launch rates approaching 1/day.

Well, if you include all launches, manned and unmanned, then let's see:

SpaceX is targeting 20+ launches this year already. Probably around 50 launches per year by 2019, when they have 4 launch sites in operation. So that's already a launch a week, just from SpaceX, before this decade is out.

Add all other operators, and you are probably up to 2 launches a week, on average. A launch every third day, in other words. I guess you're correct that this could quite conceivably triple in cadence by the end of the 2020's, to a launch a day.
I was counting CommX launches assuming F9.

Just that is crazy.  That's why I still think an integrated reusable sat deployer has to happen, or else how are you going to launch 12000 sats?

5 year life span ==> 2400/yr

20 per fairing ==> 120 launches/yr

Once every 3 days, just on the CommX side.

So either the constellation plans don't have a way to be launched, or we're going to see changes to the launch vehicles.

*This is assuming the VLEO sats can last 5 years, or else the launch rate increases.

It also means they are fine waiting for 5 years for full capacity.

What about other constellations?  Some will wait for new Glenn. Some might ask for a ride.  Will SpaceX launch them?

(Continuing on the F9B5 thread)
« Last Edit: 03/09/2017 03:15 pm by meekGee »
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Offline whitelancer64

Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #625 on: 03/09/2017 03:08 pm »

I was counting CommX launches assuming F9.

Just that is crazy.  That's why I still think an integrated reusable sat deployer has to happen, or else how are you going to launch 12000 sats?

5 year life span ==> 2400/yr

20 per fairing ==> 120 launches/yr

Once every 3 days, just on the CommX side.

So either the constellation plans don't have a way to be launched, or we're going to see changes to the launch vehicles.

Or the assumption of 20 sats per launch is wrong.
"One bit of advice: it is important to view knowledge as sort of a semantic tree -- make sure you understand the fundamental principles, ie the trunk and big branches, before you get into the leaves/details or there is nothing for them to hang on to." - Elon Musk
"There are lies, damned lies, and launch schedules." - Larry J

Offline Comga

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #626 on: 03/09/2017 03:10 pm »
This is again drifting away from discussion of the Heavy and on to all sorts of other topics, ITS, weekly and daily launches, Raptor upper stages,..... 
Can we put those where they belong and get back to discussion of the Falcon Heavy here?
Thanks
What kind of wastrels would dump a perfectly good booster in the ocean after just one use?

Offline M.E.T.

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #627 on: 03/09/2017 03:12 pm »

I was counting CommX launches assuming F9.

Just that is crazy.  That's why I still think an integrated reusable sat deployer has to happen, or else how are you going to launch 12000 sats?

5 year life span ==> 2400/yr

20 per fairing ==> 120 launches/yr

Once every 3 days, just on the CommX side.

So either the constellation plans don't have a way to be launched, or we're going to see changes to the launch vehicles.

Or the assumption of 20 sats per launch is wrong.

Or Bezos's plan to move industry into orbit and thereby create a space economy starts materializing, generating the demand for large scale industrial launches on a continuous basis. A vision that is not mutually exclusive with Musk's Mars colonization goals.

Offline M.E.T.

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #628 on: 03/09/2017 03:13 pm »
This is again drifting away from discussion of the Heavy and on to all sorts of other topics, ITS, weekly and daily launches, Raptor upper stages,..... 
Can we put those where they belong and get back to discussion of the Falcon Heavy here?
Thanks

Noted and agreed.

Online meekGee

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #629 on: 03/09/2017 03:21 pm »
This is again drifting away from discussion of the Heavy and on to all sorts of other topics, ITS, weekly and daily launches, Raptor upper stages,..... 
Can we put those where they belong and get back to discussion of the Falcon Heavy here?
Thanks
Yup.  I took the launch rate talk to the F9B5 thread
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Offline philw1776

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #630 on: 03/09/2017 05:39 pm »

Raptor is for en entirely different purpose than Merlin. ITS will not replace F9. If anything, more Merlins will be produced as SX becomes more proficient and Block 5 becomes more reliable. Raptor should do nothing to affect economies of scale on the Merlin production line. Reusability of Merlins may balance out the increasing number of Falcon flights, though.

I can not believe that. Once Raptor is in full production and reliable, they will want to terminate Merlin and Falcon production. Wether they do everything with ITS or build a smaller cousind, I don't know. I guess they will want something smaller and 7 engines like New Glenn look just about right. I just guess they want to do that after ITS flies, not before.

If only SpaceX would have designed a re-useable booster so that by then they could be flying "flight qualified" block 5+s on Falcon Heavy etc. and cut back Merlin production to Mvacs plus a few spares.

I agree that they'll want to terminate Falcon Heavy etc. production down to a level to produce spares.  Maybe zero.

Why not fly ITS style boosters with less engines, say 21 to 28, for full re-useable lesser payload launches?
I think they'll flight test the 1st ITSs with reduced engine # boilerplates.
« Last Edit: 03/09/2017 05:41 pm by philw1776 »
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Offline Lars-J

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #631 on: 03/09/2017 05:56 pm »

Raptor is for en entirely different purpose than Merlin. ITS will not replace F9. If anything, more Merlins will be produced as SX becomes more proficient and Block 5 becomes more reliable. Raptor should do nothing to affect economies of scale on the Merlin production line. Reusability of Merlins may balance out the increasing number of Falcon flights, though.

I can not believe that. Once Raptor is in full production and reliable, they will want to terminate Merlin and Falcon production. Wether they do everything with ITS or build a smaller cousind, I don't know. I guess they will want something smaller and 7 engines like New Glenn look just about right. I just guess they want to do that after ITS flies, not before.

If only SpaceX would have designed a re-useable booster so that by then they could be flying "flight qualified" block 5+s on Falcon Heavy etc. and cut back Merlin production to Mvacs plus a few spares.

What do you mean by "if only"? That is exactly their plan! If block 5 reuse is as successful as hoped, they drastically cut down booster production and move the majority of production to upper stages. The same for engines.

Why not fly ITS style boosters with less engines, say 21 to 28, for full re-useable lesser payload launches?
I think they'll flight test the 1st ITSs with reduced engine # boilerplates.

ITS discussion has little (or nothing) to do with this thread, please move it to where it belongs.
« Last Edit: 03/09/2017 05:56 pm by Lars-J »

Offline philw1776

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #632 on: 03/09/2017 07:35 pm »

Raptor is for en entirely different purpose than Merlin. ITS will not replace F9. If anything, more Merlins will be produced as SX becomes more proficient and Block 5 becomes more reliable. Raptor should do nothing to affect economies of scale on the Merlin production line. Reusability of Merlins may balance out the increasing number of Falcon flights, though.

I can not believe that. Once Raptor is in full production and reliable, they will want to terminate Merlin and Falcon production. Wether they do everything with ITS or build a smaller cousind, I don't know. I guess they will want something smaller and 7 engines like New Glenn look just about right. I just guess they want to do that after ITS flies, not before.

If only SpaceX would have designed a re-useable booster so that by then they could be flying "flight qualified" block 5+s on Falcon Heavy etc. and cut back Merlin production to Mvacs plus a few spares.

What do you mean by "if only"? That is exactly their plan! If block 5 reuse is as successful as hoped, they drastically cut down booster production and move the majority of production to upper stages. The same for engines.

Why not fly ITS style boosters with less engines, say 21 to 28, for full re-useable lesser payload launches?
I think they'll flight test the 1st ITSs with reduced engine # boilerplates.

ITS discussion has little (or nothing) to do with this thread, please move it to where it belongs.

If only was intended to be sarcasm.
Responding to discussion.
Willkeep to FH topic.
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Offline Lars-J

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #633 on: 03/09/2017 08:02 pm »
I guess my sarcasm detector was malfunctioning.  ;)

Offline Adaptation

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #634 on: 03/09/2017 08:28 pm »

However, didn't Elon say a while ago that they abandoned upper stage recoverability (for now) because it proved impossible with the Merlin engine? If a Raptor upper stage made full reusability possible, (in addition to allowing New Glenn level payloads on the expendable Falcon Heavy), would that not go some way to justifying the costs of the revised upper stage production line?



It has nothing to do with the engine. 
Just stop, Spacex has said no Raptor with Falcon

Jim your wrong, while [citation needed] they may have in the past stated that, they have more recently made commitments for its development.  SpaceX has contracted with the Department of Defense and Air Force to adapt raptor for Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy.

https://www.defense.gov/News/Contracts/Contract-View/Article/642983

Musk for years had hinted at the possibility of doing a hydrolox upper vacuum engine for F9, early raptor development toyed with this fuel before switching to methellox. 

It should also be no surprise to anyone that the initial raptor tests were on a raptor with only slightly more thrust than the Merlin instead of the maximum the test stand would accept. 

There is a very high chance of a raptor variant being used on future F9/FH upper stages. 
« Last Edit: 03/09/2017 08:38 pm by Adaptation »

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #635 on: 03/09/2017 08:40 pm »
While that is true; the link you provided above was also from a time months before the ITS was unveiled and Space X has subsequently said that the Falcon designs would be 'frozen' in the near future.
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Offline Jim

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #636 on: 03/09/2017 09:17 pm »
There is a very high chance of a raptor variant being used on future F9/FH upper stages. 

Wrong.  They have stated in the present (after that contact). No Raptor on F9/FH.
They basically just took the Air Force's money because they have no intend themselves to use it. 
« Last Edit: 03/09/2017 09:18 pm by Jim »

Offline georgegassaway

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #637 on: 03/09/2017 10:05 pm »
My prediction:

By 2025:

First ITS flew (cis-lunar), multiple are being built.

Man,  I've gotta clean off my monitor & keyboard.....  :)

There's lots and lots and lots of "six months" before ITS ever flies, if it actually gets built and flies.

My prediction:  FH flies by 2025.   :)

OK, serious prediction:  FH first flight:  Quarter one of 2018.

HOPE I'm wrong, that it is before then. But realistically based on delays, past history, delays, very low priority for preparing infrastructure, and delays, I do not think it is likely to happen in 2017.
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Online meekGee

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #638 on: 03/09/2017 10:09 pm »
My prediction:

By 2025:

First ITS flew (cis-lunar), multiple are being built.

Man,  I've gotta clean off my monitor & keyboard.....  :)

There's lots and lots and lots of "six months" before ITS ever flies, if it actually gets built and flies.

My prediction:  FH flies by 2025.   :)

OK, serious prediction:  FH first flight:  Quarter one of 2018.

HOPE I'm wrong, that it is before then. But realistically based on delays, past history, delays, very low priority for preparing infrastructure, and delays, I do not think it is likely to happen in 2017.

How is FH in Q1 2018 contradictory to ITS flying in 2025?

With waiting for LC40 (which was clear to me from when I saw the pad go up in flames), of course 2017 is iffy at best for FH.

When do you think ITS will fly?
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Offline Adaptation

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Re: SpaceX Falcon Heavy Discussion (Thread 5)
« Reply #639 on: 03/09/2017 10:14 pm »
Wrong.  They have stated in the present (after that contact). No Raptor on F9/FH.
They basically just took the Air Force's money because they have no intend themselves to use it.

The contract is predicated on a 2:1 spending ratio from SpaceX and is specific to adapting raptor for F9/FH not generalized raptor development.  So you are asserting that they wish to throw away $67m of there own money to get $33m from the Air Force?  I fail to see the logic in this.  The contract also gives both parties the option to double down with SpaceX able to receive up to $61m by spending at least $123m of there own money on the program.

I am perfectly willing to kowtow to your assertions if only they came with credible citations.  I've got this actual contract on one hand saying that they are working on raptor for F9 and you saying they are not.

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