Author Topic: SpaceX customers' views on reuse  (Read 89740 times)

Offline wannamoonbase

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #400 on: 12/21/2017 04:09 PM »
Shotwell said the only FH to ever fly with non-Block 5 cores will be the maiden launch.

STP-2 should fly three new cores* and possibly keep flying the same three on FHs down the road.  I think we'll all be surprised to find how few Block 5 cores it takes to fly a 30-launch manifest.  My guess is three for FH, and a pair of F9 at each of three three pads.  About ten total...  easily fab'd by mid-2018.

* assumes the maiden launch goes well enough to not need repeating.

Agreed in part, they will not have to build too many FH cores or boosters.  Maybe a few sets.

Regarding the F9, they will start somewhat slowly, as they still need to finish the Block 5, fly it, learn from it and improve the process flow. 

I think 2018 will still require a similar production flow as 2017.
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Offline Lar

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #401 on: 12/21/2017 06:07 PM »
I think 3 F9 first stages per launch site is more likely as at times one stage will have to be undergoing its every 10 launches refurbishment.  But 2018 may continue to see a skew in the S1:S2 ratio (we have no hard evidence, nothing except inference but it surely has already started)
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Online AncientU

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #402 on: 12/21/2017 07:32 PM »
I think 3 F9 first stages per launch site is more likely as at times one stage will have to be undergoing its every 10 launches refurbishment.  But 2018 may continue to see a skew in the S1:S2 ratio (we have no hard evidence, nothing except inference but it surely has already started)

Well, for hard evidence, they've just fab'd their 400th M1-D engine and have flown(or attempted to) 45 times, have at least three boosters plus FH ready to fly, and more being produced.  Four of those flights were previously-flown boosters and two of the FH cores are too.  We'll see the numbers of M1-Ds fall far behind 10xnumber of flights as Block 5 comes on line.  These numbers even make me think they might be reusing some previously flown engines on new boosters (never heard this was true and cannot keep track of which booster is where any more).
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Online FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #403 on: 12/21/2017 07:43 PM »
I think we may have strayed a little from customer views on reuse ...

Iím hoping someone can find info on another customer electing to reuse?

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #404 on: 12/21/2017 09:30 PM »
A type of reuse I havenít noticed customers discussing before:

Quote
@IridiumBoss with the move to allow using flight proven cores, would Iridium now be open to being the first company to use reused Fairings?

https://twitter.com/beeberunner/status/943544314096955397

Quote
We're open to anything if it can be proven to improve risk, schedule and cost.  We're about getting our amazing next generation network in space as fast and safely as we can, not creating history for its own sake (though happy to do that this week with our fourth launch)!

https://twitter.com/iridiumboss/status/943547579001987073

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #405 on: 12/22/2017 09:04 PM »
Iím hoping someone can find info on another customer electing to reuse?

SpaceX have now announced that the PAZ launch in January will be on a flight proven booster :)

A good sign:

SpaceX Opens Media Accreditation for PAZ Mission


HAWTHORNE, Calif. Ė December 22, 2017. Media accreditation is now open for SpaceX's PAZ mission from Space Launch Complex 4 East (SLC-4E) at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The launch is targeted for no earlier than late January 2018.

A flight-proven Falcon 9 will deliver PAZ to a low-Earth orbit (LEO).

Offline oldAtlas_Eguy

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #406 on: 12/22/2017 09:47 PM »
With GovSat -1 also a reuse booster that means of the first 4 launches in 2018 3 of them use used boosters. FH, Govsat-1 and Paz.

In the first 3 months 1Q2018 there could be as many as 8 used boosters launched out of a possible 10 launches. Because of the FH there will be 4 new boosters with 8 used. That is a used to total rate of 67%. But obviously not all of those possible 10 launches will occur in the first 3 months.

Key is that the acceptance is growing and will be represented by the number of used boosters flown to the total number flown in 2018.

Online AncientU

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #407 on: 12/22/2017 10:40 PM »
With GovSat -1 also a reuse booster that means of the first 4 launches in 2018 3 of them use used boosters. FH, Govsat-1 and Paz.

In the first 3 months 1Q2018 there could be as many as 8 used boosters launched out of a possible 10 launches. Because of the FH there will be 4 new boosters with 8 used. That is a used to total rate of 67%. But obviously not all of those possible 10 launches will occur in the first 3 months.

Key is that the acceptance is growing and will be represented by the number of used boosters flown to the total number flown in 2018.

Also interesting the GovSat and Paz are European government launches, Luxembourg and Spain respectively.  Must be quite a stir in Europe about losing these flights from ArianeSpace... and them flying on reused boosters.  Maybe ESA needs to rethink its position on reusability.

Another European national program that selected reused vehicles was Bulgaria.  Many other government programs have chosen Falcon including Korean, Taiwan, Israel, Germany, etc. but these are only yet manifested on new boosters -- subject to change as manifest launches/future launches approach and reuse becomes the norm.
« Last Edit: 12/22/2017 10:47 PM by AncientU »
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Offline UKobserver

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #408 on: 12/23/2017 12:15 AM »
Moving across from the PAZ thread.

By accident or design, SpaceX seem to have hit upon a very effective method of persuading their customers to accept pre-flown cores, namely, to offer them a core that they have already used themselves, and therefore have intimate first-hand knowledge of the profile and stresses it was subjected to on it's first flight.

Based on that emerging pattern, and a feeling that I don't think they will move a booster between coasts if they don't have to; as 1041 has been set aside to fly Iridium 5, my guess would also be that 1038 (Formosat) lofts PAZ/Microsat 2a/2b.

Looking further ahead; It would be a real waste to expend a brand-new Block 4 (1044) launching Hispasat, so if I was SpaceX I would be trying hard to persuade that customer to re-use 1032, which would make a good use of their oldest remaining, single-flight core which hasn't performed a GTO mission. They could quite happily launch that expendable and feel that they've got good service out of it.

1039 (CRS-12) is reserved for CRS-14, so that would make 1040 (OTV-5) the next available booster for SES-16. Again, they could offer to make that expendable potentially, depending on how badly they want the core back. SES did seem to be in a hurry to launch this one, so they may be nudging SpaceX for a supersynchronous orbit.

That would use up the last of the non-reserved, non-GTO, pre-flown cores, so in that scenario if I was SpaceX I would use 1044 for Bangabandhu. At circa 3500kg it will be a fairly gentle (relatively-speaking) GTO flight for a late model block 4 (?), so they may well be able to get another flight out of it at some point.

Which would take them up to SES-12; They should have plenty of new cores ready to fly by then, but might they be able to persuade SES to be the first customer to re-fly a GTO core and use 1042 (Koreasat) for that one? They could have a pad-slot available to launch that as soon as mid-Feb, which surely wouldn't be enough time to refurbish 1043 (Zuma)? It could potentially allow SES to fly sooner than they would otherwise be able, and SpaceX would also be able to offer that as an expendable launch, boosting to a supersynchronous orbit for the quickest possible time to final position.

That's obviously a lot of guesses, each based on the last, and others with L2 access may know differently, but it seems like one possible scenario. 1032 and 1040 could easily be the other way around.

Question for those in the know; how close are the USAF to being ready to try a used booster? And would SpaceX be holding 1032 or 1040 in reserve for GPS III-1 so that they can offer a booster whose life and use the USAF has already watched closely? Or is that out of the question until Block 5?

Edit: Mods please move to a more appropriate thread if this is off-topic.
Edit: various amendments!

Online woods170

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #409 on: 12/23/2017 11:13 AM »
With GovSat -1 also a reuse booster that means of the first 4 launches in 2018 3 of them use used boosters. FH, Govsat-1 and Paz.

In the first 3 months 1Q2018 there could be as many as 8 used boosters launched out of a possible 10 launches. Because of the FH there will be 4 new boosters with 8 used. That is a used to total rate of 67%. But obviously not all of those possible 10 launches will occur in the first 3 months.

Key is that the acceptance is growing and will be represented by the number of used boosters flown to the total number flown in 2018.

Also interesting the GovSat and Paz are European government launches, Luxembourg and Spain respectively.  Must be quite a stir in Europe about losing these flights from ArianeSpace... and them flying on reused boosters.  Maybe ESA needs to rethink its position on reusability.

Another European national program that selected reused vehicles was Bulgaria.  Many other government programs have chosen Falcon including Korean, Taiwan, Israel, Germany, etc. but these are only yet manifested on new boosters -- subject to change as manifest launches/future launches approach and reuse becomes the norm.
ESA member states are encouraged to "fly Ariane" but it is not an obligation. In fact, not even all ESA missions fly Ariane.
If and when ESA member states develop missions separate from ESA (such as pure govsats like GovSat and Paz) they are free to choose the launch vehicle of their liking.

But I digress.
« Last Edit: 12/23/2017 11:15 AM by woods170 »

Online AncientU

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #410 on: 12/23/2017 01:17 PM »
The Ariane 6 push for 'exploitation' of the European launcher is a direct result of losing out to the competition IMO.  Since the thread is on customer views, it is informative that even customers who have top level pressure to not pick SpaceX/flight-proven boosters are still going that way.  Low price plus high reliability plus (recently) a shortened queue is a winning formula.
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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #411 on: 12/23/2017 02:44 PM »
Many other government programs have chosen Falcon including Korean, Taiwan, Israel, Germany, etc.

Re: Israel.  If you're talking about Spacecom (Amos-6, -17, & -8) they are not a government program.  Just a satellite operator that happens to be based in Israel.  IAI (which is a state owned corp.) built the AMOS-6 satellite for them, but it wasn't a government program.
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Online woods170

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #412 on: 12/23/2017 05:34 PM »
The Ariane 6 push for 'exploitation' of the European launcher is a direct result of losing out to the competition IMO.  Since the thread is on customer views, it is informative that even customers who have top level pressure to not pick SpaceX/flight-proven boosters are still going that way.  Low price plus high reliability plus (recently) a shortened queue is a winning formula.
Disagree a bit.

The same push took place when Ariane 4 went into service. And it was repeated prior to Ariane 5 going into service. Standard ESA/Arianespace MO. The only difference this time is that it is more urgent.

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #413 on: 12/24/2017 03:10 AM »
I think thereís also a culture change going on now. It may not be hugely impactful at the moment, but itís baking itself into the new generation of thinkers, leaders, and influencers. Itís what the current generation of the (old) space industry decision makers is exactly missing. And sadly itís whatís required for a disruption and a move towards the next great push forward. Sadly, because I fear NASA has found itself in the old camp. Largely not its fault, more of the governmental trappings itís tangled in, but true nonetheless.
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Offline Lar

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #414 on: 12/24/2017 04:12 AM »
I think thereís also a culture change going on now. It may not be hugely impactful at the moment, but itís baking itself into the new generation of thinkers, leaders, and influencers. Itís what the current generation of the (old) space industry decision makers is exactly missing. And sadly itís whatís required for a disruption and a move towards the next great push forward. Sadly, because I fear NASA has found itself in the old camp. Largely not its fault, more of the governmental trappings itís tangled in, but true nonetheless.

Agreed. But the old guard is very powerful and it's not a done deal that this new thinking will prevail. Or we may see a "two speed" economy where many but not all organizations embrace reuse, but things like SLS and Orion persist because they have powerful lobbyist friends and power blocks like the Alabama Mafia to protect them.  That wasted cost may just be a tax (or protection money if you like) on the new system that has to be paid in order not to get shut down.
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Offline bulkmail

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #415 on: 12/24/2017 11:58 AM »
...  Another European national program that selected reused vehicles was Bulgaria.  ...

minor nitpick: Bulgariasat is a private telecom/TV satellite, not a "national program"

Offline john smith 19

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #416 on: 12/26/2017 06:38 AM »
but things like SLS and Orion persist because they have powerful lobbyist friends and power blocks like the Alabama Mafia to protect them. 
Such a group only cares about the jobs such programmes bring to it's area. Siting a Blue Origin factory in has definitely helped the reusability case for Bezos. It'll be interesting to see how cost effective it is to run.
Quote from: Lar
That wasted cost may just be a tax (or protection money if you like) on the new system that has to be paid in order not to get shut down.
Given that SLS and Orion are both funded directly and completely by the USG that "tax" is actual tax paid by US Taxpayers. All of them, in 50 states.

However this is OT for this thread.

USG launches are a very big part of the global launch market, so I guess the key question is when, (and which) bit of the USG will embrace the use of a flight tested booster?

Using The Aerospace Corps 5/8 rule I'd guess when when they've seen at least 5 flights (mfg process working OK) to something close to one of the 9 reference orbits in the EELV certification list and they have a payload which has a low enough priority that they can afford to lose it.
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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #417 on: 12/26/2017 09:33 AM »
USG launches are a very big part of the global launch market, so I guess the key question is when, (and which) bit of the USG will embrace the use of a flight tested booster?

Using The Aerospace Corps 5/8 rule I'd guess when when they've seen at least 5 flights (mfg process working OK) to something close to one of the 9 reference orbits in the EELV certification list and they have a payload which has a low enough priority that they can afford to lose it.

The USAF has been making encouraging noises but maybe lead times on reuse certification etc will preclude them being first? I think the question of whether USG customers want to see reuse on similar orbits first is an interesting one. Iíve now added basic orbit type info (LEO, GTO, SSO etc) to the first post of this thread.

As always, corrections and additions welcome.

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #418 on: 12/26/2017 12:08 PM »
but things like SLS and Orion persist because they have powerful lobbyist friends and power blocks like the Alabama Mafia to protect them. 
Such a group only cares about the jobs such programmes bring to it's area. Siting a Blue Origin factory in has definitely helped the reusability case for Bezos. It'll be interesting to see how cost effective it is to run.
Quote from: Lar
That wasted cost may just be a tax (or protection money if you like) on the new system that has to be paid in order not to get shut down.
Given that SLS and Orion are both funded directly and completely by the USG that "tax" is actual tax paid by US Taxpayers. All of them, in 50 states.

However this is OT for this thread.

USG launches are a very big part of the global launch market, so I guess the key question is when, (and which) bit of the USG will embrace the use of a flight tested booster?

Using The Aerospace Corps 5/8 rule I'd guess when when they've seen at least 5 flights (mfg process working OK) to something close to one of the 9 reference orbits in the EELV certification list and they have a payload which has a low enough priority that they can afford to lose it.

Maybe 20% by numbers and falling rapidly.  They are only a big percentage (50-ish%) of the cost of satellites.
Hasn't the USG already flown on a flight-proven booster(CRS-13)?

http://www.sia.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/SIA-SSIR-2017.pdf
« Last Edit: 12/26/2017 12:12 PM by AncientU »
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Offline Lar

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Re: SpaceX customers' views on reuse
« Reply #419 on: 12/26/2017 12:50 PM »
Maybe 20% by numbers and falling rapidly.  They are only a big percentage (50-ish%) of the cost of satellites.
Hasn't the USG already flown on a flight-proven booster(CRS-13)?

http://www.sia.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/SIA-SSIR-2017.pdf

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